Monday, July 30, 2012


In the world of quilting there are many aspects to the art and creativity of the process. 
Some people look at a pattern or a completed quilt and want to make it exactly as it is. Others want to make the pattern but use different fabrics as often the exact fabrics are no longer available. (Another reason when you see fabric you LOVE, buy enough of it). 

I see patterns and quilts and not only want it in different fabrics, colors most of the time, I also want to make changes to the overall pattern. I have only made 4 quilts totally by following a pattern. And only one that used the fabrics that were used in the original pattern. 

And so it is with my latest wall hanging. I had been working on other quilting projects and saw the Fons' and Porter Easy Quilts magazine for fall 2012. I opened the magazine to see if there were any quilts I liked. I sometimes find one or two, sometimes none. This time I found one. Immediately I saw the quilt 'my way'.  

Not having time to purchase the magazine I took a photo of the quilt. By the time I returned to buy the magazine there were no more left to buy.  Plus, I had noticed that the actual pattern was not included in the magazine.  Since I was going to make major changes in the pattern I just took the photo that was on my cell phone, studied it and figured out all the measurements to make the wall hanging. 

I also did the process backwards from what is 'Normal' in  that I waited to make the center block  until I had the first outlining border done. I did the outer borders at the end, but the inner border was done before the center block was made.  This required a lot of calculations all along the process. 

Weeds and Tweeds by Jacqueline Paton through Red Rooster Fabrics and Fons and Porter
Here is my inspiration quilt. Original design called "Weeds and Tweeds' by Jacqueline Paton for Red Rooster Fabrics. 

And here is the "Gifts of the Sea" wall hanging top I made that was inspired by the above quilt.

"Gifts of the Sea" by Phyllis Dewey
It still needs to be longarmed and the binding put on which I will get to next month.  

Also - since the time that I made the top I went on line and found the pattern on line for free.  I reading the pattern I found that I did things a little bit on the 'did it the hard way", but that is part of living and learning.  The end result is what counts. 
And remember: It's not in what is there, it is in what you see. 
Feel free to interrupt what you see into what you want.  

Enjoy your day and your freedom to be creative. 


Saturday, July 21, 2012


Whether it is watching the storms approach, or just watching the sky change, or watching the sun set or one of the many beautiful sunrises we are blessed with, my DH and I often look out over what surrounds us and are amazed at what we see.  God's beauty. 

From our back deck we see pasture that gives way to mountains in a full semi circle. The pasture is home to nearly 100 cows both big and tiny.

Our front view is a road, then another small pasture that leads to woodland.  

The cows are fun and interesting to watch.  Did you know that full grown cows can run?  That the little baby cows love to run and play with each other? That cows mourn over the death of one of their own? That they will gather together to fight off a coyote who is after one of their little ones? We've seen it all. 

We sit and watch traffic as it goes buy, often speeding. We've also seen several accidents within 1/4 of a mile of our house. One actually landed in our front yard and across the road from us. 
We also get to watch the farm tractors slowly past holding up traffic, and it reminds me even more that we still live in the country.

This summer we have been witness to a Red Hawk who has  had a nest in the tallest tree at the edge of the woods across the street.  This past week both DH and I witnessed the hawk with a smaller bird. We assumed it was teaching the little one to fly and glide. 

When we get company either just to visit us or coming to Quilter's Pantry for business we often get asked how we ever get any work done.  I assure them that it isn't always easy.  I'd much rather just sit and watch the country world go by on some days. 

But I know that as much as the view outside is calling me so are the fabrics and the quilts calling my name.  Quilts that customers have sent and need to be quilted to finish the beautiful work my customer has done in piecing them. 
Fabric that calls my name and wants to be made into a quilt to sell or to give to someone. 

Lately I also have fabric calling my name to make baby things. Baby quilts, bibs, burp cloths.  The baby items are just about done. I still have a little over 2 months to make more little things. 

And now it is time to start thinking of what to make for Christmas for gifts.  Yes, I know it's only July, but as a crafter/quilter it is really never too early to start making things.  

And so, I leave you now.  Enjoy looking at the sky we see while I sit and look at yet another sun set. 
Tomorrow the fabric will be calling me, and I will go work on my quilting.  
Tonight - I relax, and may do the binding on a baby quilt for my grandson. 

Have a great week everyone. And if you ever get this way ---- call and drop by.  We'd love to share our view with you. And you can meet all my fabrics and quilts too.

Til next time ---

Sunday, July 8, 2012


In my post the other day I showed the difference that fabric choices make when quilting.
I've made two more of those blocks with still different fabrics.  I've also added borders to nearly all of the blocks. Adding the borders just gives them more life and makes a big difference.

As these are not being made to go into a complete quilt, but will be used as wall hangings or table covers these are ready to be longarmed and then a binding put on them.  Once they are done I will show what a difference longarm quilting makes to them. 

Each step of quilting, each color or print choice, each added element all make a difference in the over all look and final result of what your quilt project will look like. 

Never be afraid to experiment with color combinations. Never be afraid of trying a new block or a new technique.  I have several techniques I've not tried yet.  Someday...

Til next time --
Happy Quilting!


Saturday, July 7, 2012


A fellow quilter posted this on one of the quilting forums I am on. I just had to share it. We don't know who originally wrote it, but they did a good job. 

The Quilter's Alphabet

Author Unknown

Accuracy...mood dependent.
Bleed...bless the fabric that doesn't.
Credit card...purrs in a quilt shop. which points look good.
Even...well, does it look even?
Fudge...adjustment terminology.
Golden...the moment it's finished!
Hug...wrap up in a quilt.
Iron...the great fabric disciplinarian!
Justify...can't cook! Quilting an heirloom.
Knot...size need not stop a truck.
Love...quilting is a labor of.
Marker...please, let it wash out.
Needle...feet always find it.
Ouch...related to one end of a pin.
Pucker...that rascally little puffy thing.
Quilt...a thing of beauty, a joy forever! ye sew, so shall ye.
Seam...straight is good. quilt, grab more.
Underside...where all the work shows.
Victim...of quilt guilt (too many?).
What...a quilt (all purpose comment)!
Xamine...I'll say how close!
Y...only quilt on days ending in "y".
Zero...other things you'd rather do

Friday, July 6, 2012


As quilters will all agree, sometimes the hardest part of making a quilt is in deciding what fabric to use. Not what type of fabric, as most will choose 100% cotton, but in deciding what colors to use together and what print of fabric works best. 

Long gone are the days when a lot of us grew up thinking that stripes did not go with plaids, or circles didn't go with other designs. We grew up thinking hem lines had to be perfectly straight across and that certain colors did not work with other colors. 

Then we became quilters!  Just about anything goes. O.k. for some - anything goes. 
When it comes to quilts they were originally made to help keep us warm and any fabric, new or old was used. The art of recycling at it's best. Today they keep us warm, become art on our walls and find many other uses.

Here are a few pictures of the latest quilt block I've been making. My co-worker got me started on it and we are both hooked on this one block. It has so many possibilities.  Yes, it can be made into a quilt with other blocks added as in the original pattern found in the Fon's and Porter August 2009 magazine where this pattern is from.   The pattern is called "Granny's Stars"  There are two star patterns in the block.  And there are 61 pieces in each block!  Sounds like a lot of pieces!  But they are fairly small, simple to make and a great way to use scraps if you are only making a single block as I am. 
Total size of these blocks is 16 - 18 inches. Size depends on if an outer border is used. 

Yes, I am making just single blocks that I will finish and make into small wall hangings, or they can be used for small table covers, or even pillow fronts. Like I said - So many possibilities. 

1st one - "Butterflies in Teal"

2nd one " Southwestern Star"

3rd one, "Fruit Basket"

4th one "Teal Daisies"

 Each of these blocks is what is called a WIP (Work in Progress) as they are not finished with the backing, quilting and binding.  But I wanted to share some of what I've been working on.  

You can see that each block has a totally different look. It's all in the fabric you choose and the placement of that fabric.  

One of the fun things about quilting is figuring out what fabrics to use where. If you are following a pattern and want to follow the pattern as close as possible you normally will look for fabrics that are as close to the pattern as possible, or the exact fabrics when possible.  I like to play around and see what different looks I can come up with. 

These are just the first of several more I'll be making.  Christmas is coming and I have several ideas......    

Find a pattern you like, just a single block and run with it! See what you can do! 

Happy Quilting! 

Til next time......