Summertime’s Big Finish

While I’m never entirely thrilled for the end of the ‘lazy’ time of year, I must admit – my brain has come to welcome the swish of a broom that fall brings for clearing out summer’s cobwebs.  The time has arrived for organizing, tidying and finishing up – and I’m ready! Before Fall officially swoops in though: A big finish to share. Continue reading “Summertime’s Big Finish”

Oh, the Bundles We Grow!

Well, it’s officially July – and the Summertime livin’ is still easy…except now I’m filling it up with more sewing projects!

On the heals of my recent introduction of our newest Happy Scrappy Stack additions in the shop – I wonder if it’s obvious enough that I kind of have a thing for assembling fabrics that cozy up comfortably with one another. What’s more, even though it does take a little time, I kind of get a kick out of cutting fabric up and assembling it into tidy little, inspiring bundles for you (and for me!).

Okay – so I get that it’s taken me a hot minute to introduce what the above IG-posted images are all about, but great things require time and evoooolving, friends! Continue reading “Oh, the Bundles We Grow!”

Our Modern Heritage BOM Kickoff!

I feel like it was forever ago that we announced our first ever Block of the Month featuring blocks from Amy Ellis’ newly released Modern Heritage Quilts.

Modern Heritage Quilts Book

I’m happy to announce, first kits shipped on Thursday and I say – let the BOMING begin!

Our first block is a simple Cross block, and we’ll be making 13.

Block 1-10

I love most that we started with this particular block because indeed cross blocks signify to me a community of people coming together for common goals.  In our case – there are 22 of us participating in this project, and it’s really a remarkable gathering of women from almost every corner of the US!

One of the things I most realized as I started these blocks is how many fabrics are, in some capacity, directional. Some of us can throw caution to the wind and not give two hoots whether our prints are going in the same direction. Some of us, on the other hand, are not so lucky and we need a little directional semblance…might I suggest:

Block 1-8
When it matters to you that the directional prints of your Cross blocks all go in the same direction, cut your long strip on either side of the square from which you’re cutting it, and cut the side pieces actually horizontal to the long center strip.
Block 1-7
It also helps to have a portable pressing board that you can take back and forth between your cutting station and your machine/pressing station.

If you’re receiving your BOM kits and haven’t quite made it over to our BOM Group Page, I hope you’ll head on over and introduce yourself – it’s getting to be a pretty lively gathering for Q & A and just some great quilting chatter!

Cheers and Happy Cross Block Making,

Pam

My Recent Perpetual Question: Do You EPP?

I’ve felt a bit like a broken record lately throughout social media as I’ve been sharing bits and pieces I find fascinating in the quilt world. Most prevalent in terms of my recent inspirations have been posts about English Paper Piecing, a patchwork technique which has been ebbing and flowing since the late 1700s. Currently, it seems to be flowing like crazy right about now. I must admit, I’m more than a bit hooked, so it’s only natural that our shop has recently been experiencing a surge of new products to support my habit and perhaps encourage yours.

Mostly, I’ve been doing a whole bunch of Hexagon EPP:

Zipper Bag Hexiejpg
It started with this sweet little zipper bag I whipped up, just because I had finally made up my mind to find a use for a zipper from an old pair of corduroys (which I’d made into an elephant, but that’s a whole other story involving my recycling addiction).

Then, since I’d already broken into a Floribella 10″ Stacker for the above project, I figured I may as well keep going…

This is what I call a 'Snack Mat,' which is really just my way of finding a use for all the one block wonders I make that don't necessarily find their way into a larger project of some kind.
This is what I call a ‘Snack Mat,’ which is really just my way of finding a use for all the one block wonders I make that don’t necessarily find their way into a larger project of some kind.

Then (still fully entrenched in Floribella and hexagons) I made this little sunny beauty:

I call this one my Starburst Mini Quilt, and as you can see - it's a bit bigger than the snack mat...
I call this one my Starburst Mini Quilt, and as you can see – it’s a bit bigger than the snack mat…

Then somewhere about the time I was all wrapped up in my Starburst project, I stumbled upon a Facebook group of (mostly) ladies that not only share photos of their hexie projects, but also exchange, by mail, 1″hexie flowers with each other.  So, of course I’ve been participating with that, and sending flowers all over the world to contribute to other people’s quilts, while they graciously send me flowers to assemble into mine.

Sophie with Monday's 'garden' mailings.
Sophie with Monday’s ‘garden’ mailings, which went as far as Australia, Ireland, and the UK, and as near to us as right here in our home state of Michigan.
Hexie Flower
One of the criteria for the hexie mail group is that we all try to choose light colored centers for the flowers we send, so that we can also write with a fabric pen – our names, where we are from, and when the flower was made.

Anyway…after Monday’s mailing, I’m all caught up on my hexie mail list for the moment, which is allowing me some time to turn my attentions to a new group I’ve recently become a part of, also on Facebook.  It’s for quilt makers of the Lucy Boston quilt pattern called Patchwork of the Crosses, which is also a pattern with a vast history of it’s own!

Lucy Boston Book
Though not yet in our shop, it will be soon!

Last but not least (as far as this post is concerned), I wanted to share a new section at our shop: English Paper Piecing. Currently, it’s a bit scant of products, but never fear – I’ll keep you informed as we broaden this little corner of our shop with great EPP finds we think you’ll love.

If you’re interested in a bit more detailed explanation of the origin of English Paper Piecing, I urge you to visit WomenFolkTheArtofQuilting, a really cool website where all sorts of information can be found about the heritage of Quilting in general.  Suffice to say, I’ve learned that English Paper Piecing specifically, has been one of the most enduring forms of this great art called quilting, for generations upon generations.

Happy Quilting,

Pam

How to Fall in Love with Every Fabric in Your Precut Bundle

Today, I had every intention of sharing with you a tutorial of this great little mini quilt I just finished.  I even spent a really loooong time putting it together, but to be truthful – it was so long (and still wasn’t done yet), I decided against finishing it, in exchange for just giving you the nuts and bolts of some things I learned as I made it, that are much more important than a tutorial would be in the first place.

For starters, I’ve been thinking a good deal about how attracted I am to so many little bundles when they’re all neat and tidy in their little roll or stack.

1 Moda Chirp Chirp By MoMo
Take the above little beauty I fell in love with recently and had to have. It’s called Chirp Chirp, designed by MoMo for Moda fabrics. So cute, so springy!
2 See How Pretty?!
I opened it and still loved it!

Invariably, however, as I began to sort through all the difference fabrics in the little collection, I started picking favorites. Then I started separating my favorites from my not-so-favorites.

Can I talk to you for a sec about this not-so-favorite fabric in my Chirp Chirp bundle? It reminds me of a 1978'sh shower curtain.
Can I talk to you for a sec about this not-so-favorite fabric in my Chirp Chirp bundle? All on it’s own, it reminds me of a shower curtain from 1982.

My point is, when I first started using precuts, I was tempted to only use the ones I loved, considering that maybe I could use the ones I didn’t love in some other project. Then I realized that I’d never use them with some other project. Why? Because they’re all meant to go together. What’s more, even the fabric above that reminds me of that dated shower curtain, is really a beautiful fabric on a larger scale!

So with the mini quilt I made this week, I decided to cut in half one fabric strip each of my Chirp Chirp jelly roll, ignoring my preferences, in exchange for just trusting the designer and manufacturer of the fabrics in the collection.

I put all my strips in a bowl and selected each strip blindly as I pieced.
I put all my half-strips in a bowl and selected each strip blindly as I pieced.

Incidentally, I also threw caution to the wind and didn’t press a single block until it was finished.

Look how awful it looks before I pressed it :/
I knew it was straight though, because I cut my strips perpendicular to the straght edge of the block, every time I cut, even if it looked uneven with the other edge of the block.
I knew it was straight though, because I cut my strips perpendicular to the straight edge of the block, every time I cut, even if it looked uneven with the other edges of the block. See how the top edge aligns with the backwards 9 measurement line? (it’s backwards because I’m a lefty, folks. I roll with backwards often. I consider it character building!)

Anyway – when I did get to pressing each block, one edge at a time, they all turned out straight.

...and hmmm. Those fabrics sort of look pretty darn good together, don't they?
…and hmmm. Those fabrics sort of look pretty darn good together, don’t they?

My finished Chirp Chirp Mini Quilt

Barn-Raising Mini Quilt Tutorial
Eureka…just as I suspected. Even though individually I wasn’t fond of every single fabric of my jelly roll on its own – I LOVE how each fabric plays it’s own role. See the shower curtain fabric in there?  Looks great doesn’t it?
My relatively recent love affair with Aurifil thread is also going strong! I pieced and machine quilted with Aurifil 50 wt, 2021 which is the perfect Natural White to match my background fabric.
My recently acquired love affair with Aurifil thread is still going strong too. I pieced and machine quilted with Aurifil 50 wt, 2021 which was the perfect Natural White to match my background fabric.
Even Sophie Bunny loves our new Chirp Chirp quilt!
Even Sophie Bunny loves our new Chirp Chirp quilt!

And there it is – my favorite quilt project to date with lots of good thing learned.

Happy chirpy, springy, quilty Friday, friends!

Pam