June 22, 2020

Beauty and the Beast: A Ruffled Pillow

Hello, and welcome back to my quilty space! Today I am sharing a pillow I made from the new Beauty and the Beast fabric by Jill Howarth for Riley Blake Designs. This fabric line features dreamy blues and creams, as well as pink, plum, and mustard prints as well! When I chose fabrics for this projects, I went with the softer colored prints. I thought they would just make the dreamiest pillow!
I have to admit, pillows are probably my favorite quilty project. They allow you to explore new ideas, blocks, techniques, quilting patterns, etc. without requiring a huge investment of time or supplies. And I tend to get bored when making larger quilts as I am too excited to move on to the next project or fabric collection to finish the one I am currently in the middle of!
For this project, I decided to make the pillow fit a 16" x 26" feather pillow form I had from Ikea. If you have never used a feather pillow insert, I highly recommend you do! They hold their shape much better than poly filled pillows, and they fill out the pillow form nicely. As you can see from the picture above, I also incorporated ruffles and ties for this pillow cover. Keep scrolling to see how it turned out!
And notice my cute vintage chalkboard as well...I decorated it to go with the theme of the pillow!

I love hot this cute pillow turned out, and I hope you like it too!
Happy Sewing!

June 15, 2020

Santa Claus Lane: A Quilt, a Pillow, and a Binding Tutorial

I love Christmas quilts. I have several, but it never seems like enough. We love to snuggle up and watch Christmas movies or read Christmas stories, and we each must have our own Christmas quilt! One inevitably gets taken to someone's room, or left downstairs when we need it upstairs, so I have decided I need to make lots so we can always find one when we need it!

When I saw this cute retro Santa Claus Lane fabric by Melissa Mortenson of Polka Dot Chair, I was immediately inspired to make my Christmas quilt for this year. I wanted something different than what I already had, and I wanted something that would be fairly quick and easy to make. I already have a Christmas quilt with a low volume background, one with a mint green background, and red generally scares me, so this time I decided to use pink! I used Riley Blake Swiss Dots in Baby Pink, and I just love how it turned out.

I made a traditional Irish Chain pattern, and it was so easy! I strip-pieced my 9 patch blocks, so no sewing lots of little squares. And I love that there is no fabric waste with this pattern and no triangles to trim off. It went together so easily, and the borders really set off the pink.

And, as a treat to myself, I decided to have my quilt quilted by my long-arm quilting friend, Heather from Material Girls Quilting. She always does such a great job and puts up with my quick turn around time and short deadlines! I used a white flannel backing fabric, and I'm so glad I did. It shows off that beautiful quilting (with pink thread!) perfectly!

Along with the beautiful quilting, my favorite part of this quilt is probably the binding. I tried something new this time, and I love how it turned out! I used two fabrics to make a little 3-D flange and to give it some contrast, and I'm going to show you how to do it too! Just scroll to the bottom of this post for instructions!

I also made a matching pillow, using my Cathedral Window Pillow Pattern, which I hope to have ready soon. I love how this pattern can show off the cutest fussy cuts. And let's face it, this Santa fabric was made for fussy cutting!

Flanged Binding Instructions

  • You will need 2 different fabrics. 
  • Cut the main binding print into 1.5" x WOF strips, and the contrasting flange fabric into 2" x WOF strips.
  • Sew the two strips together and press toward the 1.5" strip.
  • Sew all of your WOF strips together, then fold binding strip in half, wrong sides together, and press. 
  • Sew the binding to the BACK of your quilt.
  • Fold over, clip in place, then machine stitch in the ditch on the top side of the binding.

So easy, but what an impact it makes!

I can't wait to snuggle up with my new Christmas quilt and pillow this winter! In fact I may not wait.
I feel a Christmas in July movie marathon coming on...

Happy Sewing!

February 27, 2020

Hourglass Quilt Featuring Michael Miller Basics

Today I am posting my last project as a Michael Miller Brand Ambassador. Working with them over the past year has been so much fun. Though I am sad to be letting it go, I am so excited to see what this new batch of talented designers will create in 2020!
For my last project, I took it back to basics. Did you know Michael Miller Fabrics has not only a HUGE collection of solids, but also a great collection of dots, gingham, and blenders as well? They all play so well together and are so fun to mix and match. My favorite project using Michael Miller basics was the Happy Hearts quilt I made for Quiltmaker magazine last fall. I mixed solids, gingham, and fabrics from their Dumb Dot line to create this fun quilt.

I have to admit that "basics" aren't usually my go-to when making a quilt. I tend to gravitate towards fun patterns and florals, but after making my Happy Hearts quilt and this hourglass quilt I'm about to tell you about, I may be changing my mind!
As far as style goes, I would describe mine as traditional and sometimes vintage. However, the more I scroll through Instagram and see the beautiful quilts others are making, the more I want to branch out and try something new. So, when I ordered my fabrics for this last project, I picked colors I don't normally work with or use together but that I see a lot in modern quilts. The colors you see above are:

  • Cream
  • Cameo
  • Dusty Rose
  • Slate
  • Celestial
  • Amber
  • Ochre
  • Jewel

My original intention with these fabrics was to make a 3-D herringbone quilt, which is why I ordered both a dark and light version of the same color. However, once I started cutting and piecing, I realized I did not enjoy the process of making a herringbone pattern, so I abandoned that, discouraged. I couldn't wrap my mind around the ways it was assembled and pieced, and it caused me more stress than joy! I think if I tried a herringbone quilt again, I might make it using the half-square triangle method instead.

So, after stewing on what to do with these beautiful fabrics, I found inspiration in a video from Missouri Star Quilt Company on how to make an  hourglass quilt.
This is a great quilt pattern. Not only does it sew together quickly, but there is NO FABRIC WASTE! No corners to trim off and throw away, no sewing with triangles. It's amazing, and I highly recommend you watch the video!
I cut my fabric into 5" squares and mixed solids with other basics, as well as some other Michael Miller coordinating prints. Once I cut my larger squares into the four smaller ones, I trimmed them down to 6" using a 6" Omnigrid ruler.
I love this ruler for this pattern because it has diagonal lines, so you can perfectly center it on the diagonal lines of your block. Once all my blocks were cut, I squared them up and started laying them out. I made my quilt 11 x 11 (blocks, that is) for a total of 121 blocks. It measures 60.5" square, but I'm thinking of adding some borders to make it a bit bigger. I am planning on using it as a picnic quilt.

So, even though it's still a work in progress, I wanted to share it with you while I was still so excited about it! I think this one is going to be a new favorite.

I want to say a huge thank you to Susan and the Michael Miller team for making me a part of your group this last year. It has been amazing!

Happy Sewing!

January 29, 2020

Springtime Apron with Mushroom Fan Club Fabrics

Spring time is my favorite. Hands down. No question about it. Winter time in Indiana seems to drag on forever sometimes, and by the time spring finally rolls around, I am SO READY! My favorite spring time activity is walking around my yard every evening, looking for signs of growth: baby birds growing in their nests, moss growing underfoot, flowers sprouting in my beds. And mushrooms growing in the woods. Yes, Indiana is full of avid mushroom hunters, and while I'm not one of them, my brother and sister in law are, and I enjoy watching their excitement as they post pictures of their finds every spring.

So, when I had the opportunity to work with this fabric, I knew exactly what I wanted to make: a mushroom-picking apron! Fat quarter friendly, it was super easy to sew! It features two large pockets and a sweet appliqued mushroom on the front.

Long ties allow you to wrap it around twice if the load gets heavy. Cute and practical. What more could a mushroom-picking girl want? Not in to mushrooms? Save it for summer time and use it as a harvest apron.

This fabric is so fun, whatever you use it for is bound to be cute!

Happy sewing, and hurry up spring!


January 6, 2020

Gingham Farm: Projects for My Little Farmhouse

If there ever was a fabric line that seemed to be made just for me, Gingham Farm for Riley Blake Designs is it! My husband and I bought a little farmhouse last year, and the colors in this fabric line match it perfectly. From the green siding to the cream trim down to the black doors, this house and this fabric line seemed meant for each other!

When I signed up for the blog tour for this fabric line, I knew I wanted to make some things for my  home. I have a black and green theme going throughout my house, so I knew this fabric would fit in perfectly. The first thing I made was two new pillows for my couch. While I miss taking down the Christmas decorations every year, I always enjoy cleaning everything really well and refreshing the home after the holidays are over. And making new pillows are a quick and easy way to do just that!

For these pillows, I used the 12" Simple Star block pattern from Lori Holt's Farm Girl Vintage book. It's so easy, and it turns out great every time. You can find the book at Fat Quarter Shop.

Next, I made a table topper quilt using the same Simple Star block, but I used the 6" blocks instead.

I quilted this little quilt with my Janome Memory Craft 6700P. I am still learning how to free motion quilt, but I enjoy the process and I am happy with how it turned out. Mini quilts and small projects are great for practicing on! Other tools I used for this project include basting spray by ThermOWeb, silver thread from Aurifil, and my Oliso iron!

Thanks for joining me on my blog tour! I hope you enjoyed it!
Happy Sewing!

Beauty and the Beast: A Ruffled Pillow

Hello, and welcome back to my quilty space! Today I am sharing a pillow I made from the new Beauty and the Beast fabric by Jill Howarth...