Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Pincushion Parade

 We're having a Patriotic Pincushion Parade on July 4th in my small quilting groups (Facebook and Yahoo).

If you're a member, make a pincushion in red, white and blue and post a photo of your creation.   But NOT before July 4th, please.

Join us. Even if you're short on time, you can still take a left over quilt block and make a quick pincushion.

Don't worry about being too late to join in - Pincushions are quick and easy and a great way to jump start your creativity. I'm still thinking about what I'll do for mine . . . .

Thanks to Sue Bennett for this great idea. Hope it becomes an annual event. Can't wait to see some of your cute pincushions!

If you're not a member of one of my groups yet -  take a look at the sidebar of this blog for info.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Friday Night Clubbing

Doll quilt clubbing, that is . . . At my age, that's more my speed. I'm usually in bed by 10:30.

I am just finishing up the quilting on the first quilt for my  *new*  doll quilt Club -  Papa's Shirts & Mama's Dresses,  Small Quilts from My Scrap Basket.  Don't be fooled by the picture in the pattern sample you saw in the last blog post -  that's just one of my old quilts. The club will have all NEW quilts. They are being worked on as we speak. Don't worry, I'll have it all finished in time.

I wanted to keep the first quilt a surprise until those of you who ordered the Club receive your package in the mail in a couple of weeks. But I thought you'd like to see some of the left over fabrics I used to make it.

Of course you can make your quilt any way you like with any color fabrics  - that's part of the fun. But I also know some of you will want to make it with the same colors because it's just too darn cute.

Patterns are expected to ship sometime in mid-July. I have to finish the quilting on the quilt (almost done), bind it, take photos for the pattern booklet first, then get it to the printer. I'll be busy, busy, busy for awhile so you all have to be patient with me. Trust me, it will be worth it. The quilts are very cute.

For this first quilt, I am also recommending that you purchase a Clover Bias Tape Maker in the 1/4 inch size if you don't already have one. (Some of you will be able to figure out why, LOL.) Or, if you are comfortable using pressing bars to make some thin strips to applique, then you can use those in place of the bias tape maker.

Some of you may have used pressing bars for the Civil War Baskets Quilt in one of my books.

The Clover tape maker was recommended to me and although I am not really that much of a gadget person it sure worked great for this particular quilt and now I am a convert. I'll have to run out and get more in various sizes. I've always been late to hop on the gadget train . . . . but better late than never.


You may have figured out that my club is called "Papa's Shirts" for a reason. Every quilt will make use of shirtings mixed with reproduction prints.  So, if you're itching to get started, go through your collection of shirtings and pull out a few different ones and put them aside for the quilts. Or perhaps shop for more. You deserve to buy more fabric. Then, for this little quilt, gather up some red, pink, tan, indigo and medium blue fabrics too. You won't need much. If you're like me, they're probably already in your scrap basket.  This particular small quilt will have 6 blocks. There are five different prints in those colors mentioned mixed with various shirting backgrounds. (I used indigo twice. Love indigo.)
Sorry, but that's all I'm giving you for today. I know, I know - what a tease.  Have a great weekend. I need to get back to work.

                                             Order the Club here.

Monday, June 20, 2016

NEW Doll Quilt Club

Join the Club! Those of you who love making small quilts and working with scraps of fabric, particularly reproduction prints, will be happy to know I am offering a NEW doll quilt club beginning in July.

The club is called Papa's Shirts & Mama's Dresses and will feature monthly patterns for five little quilts using your favorite reproduction fabric scraps. Years ago, doll quilts made for and by children were often sewn from leftover scraps of Mama's dresses and Papa's old shirts.

When you sign up to become a member of the club, every month, for five months (July through November 2016), you'll receive a pattern "booklet" for a simple little doll quilt. The quilts will have an old-fashioned look like doll quilts from long ago that we all love so much. The full-color booklets will include photos, pattern instructions, tips and other little interesting tidbits.  (NOTE: Patterns will not be sold individually. You must join the club to get all five.)

Making small quilts from your scrap basket -  what could be more fun?

Get your fabric scraps ready!

The first pattern will mail mid-July. This is guaranteed to be something to keep you busy while we're waiting for my new book to arrive sometime in December . . . .

      Order your membership in my club here.

The new club will be similar to the American Schoolgirl doll quilt pattern club I created a few years ago but with different quilts, of course. These are all new patterns, none taken from my published books or previous patterns. Here's a sampling of the quilts from that other club - 

Can you tell I'm very excited about this? I've wanted to do another doll quilt club for a long time. Along with this club and the patterns for 16 little quilts coming in the new book you can say I'm even more devoted to doll quilts than I ever was before. I hope some of you will be too!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Quilts in the Garden

Welcome to my little nest . . . and enjoy seeing some quilts in my garden. 

Peony quilt from my book Remembering Adelia.  One of my all-time favorites.

More little quilts from Remembering Adelia.

I love simple things the best.

Free pattern here.

Sampler is from my Prairie Children book. 

Have a lovely day!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Slow Down and Saunter

Aaaahhh, so nice to have some good "sauntering" weather finally. Walking is one thing and I do my share of it at a good pace. But sauntering is different and often much more pleasant, especially if you happen to be sauntering through the woods or a lovely garden. I consider myself a pro at this and have many lovely memories of the walks I used to take with my kids when they were toddlers, slowing down and stopping to observe the awesome beauty in a puddle, stick or dandelion. 

I looked up "sauntering" and discovered that there is actually a World Sauntering Day, celebrated on June 19 every year. Who knew? The purpose is to remind people to slow down and enjoy life as opposed to rushing through it. Also called International Sauntering Day. I love it.

Some of you may know that Thoreau was a great advocate of sauntering. I bought a t-shirt similar to this one once when we visited The Thoreau Society in Concord, MA. At the Walden Pond Gift Shop, as a matter of fact (if you can believe Walden Pond really has a gift shop, LOL. Wonder what Henry would say about THAT?) Cannot find mine anymore.

So I did some really nice sauntering a few days ago in order to reclaim my sanity after a busy week. Thought you'd enjoy pictures.

As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives. -Henry David Thoreau

A pretty bench if you tire of sauntering . . . .

"Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul alike."  John Muir

The Chicago Botanic Garden has numerous varieties of Allium - the ornamental onion plant.  So delicate and pretty. Blooming all over the place.

There it is again, my favorite blue door to the English Walled Garden. If you see it, you know where I've been (the Chicago Botanic Garden).

"It is a great art to saunter."

Have a lovely weekend!