Posts

Triple Sunset photo shoot

Image
Fall colour didn't last long around here this year.  Leaves seemed to drop almost as soon as they changed colour.  I was glad to get Triple Sunset quilted and bound in time to have a photo shoot with the last of the leaves!

The wind gave us a little bit of trouble, as you can see.  It seemed to pick up every time we unfolded the quilt, without fail, but we still managed to get a few good pictures.


I love this one on the bridge, though it does look a bit like I forgot to quilt whole swaths of the quilt.  That's a bit unfortunate, considering all the hand wringing that went on in the sewing room about how I should quilt it.  I pushed through it and my favourite picture doesn't even show it!


This one is a bit better.  You see those vertical quilted lines up at the top?  There are some of those filling in all the white spaces that are not quilted with diagonal lines.  My original plan was to quilt half the quilt background in one diagonal direction, and the other half in the o…

Welcome IAQ members!

Image
I'm a guest designer for the International Association of Quilters! If you are not familiar with the IAQ, it's an online subscription membership quilting group.  The group hosts online quilt alongs, forums, monthly guest designers and an archive of past IAQ patterns.  It's rather like an online guild. You can hop over to its website for more information.

As November's guest designer, I am pleased to welcome members of the IAQ today.  If you are here from the IAQ, welcome.  I hope you will stay and explore a little bit, get to know my quilts, and perhaps check out a few tutorials.  Also, remember to download your Night Sky Mystery block for November.



Since the mystery quilt theme is the night sky, I felt I really should design a star block.  That's right up my alley. Perhaps being married to an astronomer has influenced me, but I love star blocks.  If you browse this blog or check out my Etsy pattern shop, you'll find just a few star themed quilts.

The block you…

Reindeer block

Image
Tomorrow evening I am teaching a class on making a quilt-as-you-go, fully lined Christmas stocking. Since my two mostly-grown children have finally come around to the idea of having new stockings (the old ones are getting fragile) I thought I could start theirs as the step outs for the class, and finish them after.  One of the options for the class is to build around a block or fussy cut piece of fabric so I needed a block.  I checked with the kids to find out what they would each like on their stocking.

I should know better.  Wording matters.  I asked "would you like a snowflake or a star or something else?"  That is what is called, in education speak, an open ended question. If I had asked "Is a star block OK?" I would probably be making a star block.  I didn't ask that.  I left the field wide open and that's how I ended up spending all afternoon making this instead.


This is a 6" block which means those antlers are teeny tiny.  Here is the block agai…

Machine Binding Tutorial

Image
Binding my quilts by machine used to intimidate me, and I was not satisfied with the results.  I was more consistent about missing the binding on the blind side than I was about stitching it down, and I figured it was just easier and tidier for me to sew the back of the binding down by hand.  However, though my speed has improved, I'm still a slow hand sewer. When projects with deadlines started piling up, I decided I needed to start practicing machine binding.


After watching and reading multiple tutorials and tips and tricks posts over the last year, keeping some tips and discarding others, I finally have a process that works for me.  I'll share it here and encourage you to do what I did: use the bits that work for you and leave the rest

I like to use 2 1/4" binding strips folded in half, sewn to the front of the quilt with a 1/4" seam allowance, just like I do when I hand sew the binding.  This gives me a finished binding that looks more like hand sewn binding on …

Corner trimming tool meets binding

Image
While I was looking through old posts last week I came across this one about how I use a corner trimming tool when I join binding strips on the diagonal.  At the end, I wrote that I would soon share how I use the tool to join the binding tails when attaching the binding to the quilt.  That was over 5 years ago.  Oops!

This weekend, I showed a customer and friend at the shop where I work how to use the tool for her binding.  She wished she had pictures to refer to so she could refresh her memory next time. OK then, it's time to finally write that post!  Mary M., this one's for you!


For completeness, I am going to include the entire process of attaching the binding to the front of the quilt. I use double fold binding made with 2 1/4" strips, and use a 1/4" seam allowance when sewing it on.  See this post for instructions to make double fold binding from individual strips, or this one to make continuous bias binding.

I lay one end of the binding about halfway along one …