Flower – a Mini Finish


This is just a quick, delightful little finish. I made the full quit for Flower for Christmas 2015. While testing the pattern for Porch Swing Quilts, I made one block correctly, and then overconfidentally sewed together five blocks without checking the pattern. They were, of course, wrong, and I was left with an extra set of Birds in the Air pieces. Those, of course, sat around for over a year before I decided to finally make that one block as a mini.

But once it was out again, it took no time to make it, quilt it in the ditch, and bind it up. And then I immediately sorted the scraps into the novelty and color bins. And now I declare this project finished! Since I didn’t keep the original, it’s nice to have a little piece of Flower for my wall. And one less leftovers bag in my to-make-mini-bin.

16″ square

Fabrics: Samantha Walker Cowgirl, Amy Ellis Modern Neutrals

See also: Finish It Up Friday, Whoop WhoopTGIFF, Needle & Thread ThursdayMonday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Tips and Tutorials TuesdayOh Scrap!, One Monthly GoalFinish Along {list}

WiP – Minecraft-y


This week was all about finishing at least one of those stupid Minecraft quilts – Christmas is coming and I’ve got to get one of them in the mail!

So I buckled down and pieced all the Enderdragon/Enderman blocks {the black ones} and the skeleton {the grey one}, then sashed up the nine-block version. And bless his dear little heart – the Dude spent over an hour searching Spoonflower and arguing with me about the difference between “stone” and “cobblestone” – he now says that the cobblestone looks really good.

His version is now eight blocks, of 16. {Okay, 7.75. Still haven’t finished that cow.} And I took it all off the design wall after this photo because I just need a break from staring at it all the time. Seriously. The Enderman will not stop looking at me.

Instead, I started on my next commission/bonus me project. A friend asked for a bookshelf quilt in jewel tones, and I bought this berry-ish bundle at my local quilt show last month. I’m using 9″ squares to make the quarter square triangles, and the leftover bits to start producing some books for the shelves. I need to pull some more blues and greens into hers, but I now have a lovely stack of squares to run through as leader/enders to make my design wall a little happier.

And obviously those book blocks will be cut skinnier and scattered around the quilt so it’s not all the same height of book. It’s just the start! There’s book stacks and leaning books and cats and family photos planned for this thing. It’s gonna be good.

Oh, and I also started binding the Frozen quilts.

And I made the decision to not rip out all my good work on the side borders on the Woven Snowmen. Really, the only issue I have with it is that it’s only 60″. And you know what? That’s big enough. It’s not huge, but whatever – it’s fine for a holiday season lap quilt. So I snapped a pic, printed it out, and popped it in a page protector, and I’m trying to decide how I want to quilt it.

Oh, yeah, and I put binding on Not-Quite-Flower and finished that one up. It’s about time to start getting some boxes together!

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

Not-Quite-Flower – a Finished Quilt!


This little quilt was about a year in the making, and has a bit of an ignominious history with me. Jennie from Porch Swing Quilts emailed me some of her thoughts for spring patterns around Christmas, and Flower immediately jumped out as the star of the show.

Only, Jennie’s first version was like my middle block, and her final version was like HER Flower quilt, with more background fabric. Which is a lovely version, and cuts better from a fat quarter. However, I liked the original, so I begged to test it anyway, since the pressing instructions would be the same.

So I made my one block, pattern was released, and the rest of my cut fabric sat around for a while. A long while. I finally pulled it out again over the summer, and overly confident in my own skills and memory, got to work on the rest of the blocks.

And ended up accidentally creating an entirely new block when I switched the color placement in the Birds-in-the-Air squares. And didn’t realize it until I was five blocks in.

At that point, well, this quilt is for my niece, and I don’t think she’ll care that the blocks are slightly different, so I decided to forge ahead and stick the “correct” {but still not according to the pattern} block in the middle.

{Admire my perfect points. Seriously. I’m good.}

The quilting is all-over loops {surprise!} with horseshoes, flowers, and stars. My niece lives on a farm and shows horses, so I thought this Riley Blake line would suit her well. The light pink paisley was an unknown stash addition.

I experimented with putting the blocks with red on the outside corners, but ended up with them in the middle of the outsides. I think it draws the eyes in the right way. And I added the red cornerstones to the outside edges.

I think the binding is Jan Patek? It was a clearance score when I was in Missoula for the half marathon in July – I knew immediately the pink, brown, and stars would be perfect.

The backing is minky from Joann’s, and I’d just like to say, Joann’s has really upped their minky selection. It’s not just those stupid bubble minky anymore. Now I just need them to go wider – I refuse to piece minky backings, so they’re limited to the under 56ish” quilts.

And hey – I have the label ON…even if it isn’t filled out.

56″ square

And I promise, next round of Porch Swing Quilts pattern testing….I’ll follow the patterns.

See also: Finish It Up Friday/Crazy Mom Quilts, Whoop Whoop/Confessions of a Fabric AddictTGIFF/Quilt Matters, Needle & Thread Thursday/My Quilt Infatuation

WiP – All the Quilting


Another week full of quilting, piecing, and generally getting stuff done. And trying not to panic over the holiday season. Only two commissioned quilts, two t-shirt quilts, one quilt for the Dude…I have everything under control. Right? Riiiiiiiiight.

Anyway, finished a t-shirt quilt. No, not one of the two I still have due for Christmas. And technically, this was done last week, but I’m running out of Fridays to post finishes. So, fine, I blogged about a finished t-shirt quilt this week.

And I quilted the pink Frozen quilt and the Cars quilt, adding to the stack of quilts that need trimmed and binding.

And since that stack is darn near falling over, I trimmed Not-Quite-Flower and prepped the binding.

And finally, I cut a loooooooot more squares and pieced the pig, the top of two Enderdragons {before realizing I didn’t have enough purple or pink for the rest of the face}, and the two blocks I was dreading – the sword and pickaxe. Everything else is using 2.5″ squares – those two were 1.5″. In the end, they weren’t bad, just time consuming. And the Dude declared them “pretty cool” which is the highest praise I can get from him.

The commissioned version is only nine blocks, so just the rest of the Enderdragon and one more to go. The Dude’s version can go more leisurely since I have until Christmas Eve. {Which, coincidentally, is probably when the Little Man’s Cars quilt will also get bound!}

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

WiP – Checklists


This week ended up being a matter of checking things off the list, rather than exercising much creativity. Which…sometimes happens. And gets things done. Creativity can be overrated, after all…?

First, and I am happy about this one – I finished the churn dashes! And even better, I pulled a vintage sheet from my stash {on the bottom left corner} and it fit perfectly. So I got it all prepped to quilt today, and…

It’s the one thing that didn’t get quilted. Table runners, check. Flower, check. Churn dash? Try again next week. But hey – on Saturday, I’m taking a longarm class with Pam Clarke. Maybe I’ll get some amazing inspiration and it was fated to be delayed?

In not-very-creative work, I made a cherry block – seen on the right – and slapped an old WiP on the design wall. I don’t think it’s ever made a blog appearance before. I’m just grabbing pairs and stitching them together every now and again.

And since I’ve already received my Lori Holt mini swap, I better buckle down and get those fruits into their jars!

And my main project after the churn dashes were done is this one – a Frozen panel with wide borders. I’m almost done with the last two corner blocks, so it’s a fast finish. Takes no brain power. But whatever – a little boy in Illinois will be very happy.

Oh, yeah, I finished the Halloween scrap quilt, too. I forgot about that. I guess I should quit complaining – finishing isn’t as much fun as starting, but finishing is worth celebrating. And to be fair, I ordered fabric for the Frozen quilt backs {yes, that’s plural Frozen quilts} and for the Minecraft quilts, so retail therapy was achieved as well.

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

WiP – Fall


Ahh, fall. School. Cooler running weather. Pumpkin spice lattes. Cinnful Angry Orchard. Excuse me while I dig out my sweaters and tall boots – this is MY season.

And the best part? It’s cool enough to have the windows open, but the breeze blowing through makes my people wrap up in quilts. I can’t keep them folded up neatly on the couch anymore these days…and that’s okay.

And so I have made some lists and I am tackling several projects in an attempt to cover more people in quilts. An admirable goal, I think.

I’m not good at working on one project until completion – but I broke down some projects into manageable steps, and try to finish a step before moving to the next step in the next project. It’s working fairly well…although it’s been a whooping two weeks.

So – Project One – finish something! Dr. Seuss Fresh Air – packed up and ready for the Christmas shipping pile.

Project Two – get the next thing ready for binding! Shivaun Place – trimmed and ready to go.

Project Three – piece the next gift quilt! Not-Quite-Flower is now a finished top and awaiting the next trip to the longarm rental.

Project Four – piece something for us! RSC Churn Dashes are moving right along with the sashing. And just generally making me happy to see them on the wall. That’s the fun part of scrap quilts – these are a whole lot of some of my very favorite fabrics.

And finally, I made the next Minecraft block. I’m rapidly running out of ones I can make from my solids scrap bin – no brown is a severe limitation! So I’m making my list to order all the missing pieces. Anyway, this is a chicken. Only one because the Dude didn’t order one for his quilt.

Now I am making up my list of steps/projects I want to accomplish this week – especially on Wednesday, my first child-free day in months! {I love you, fall.}

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

WiP – One More Day


Just a few short more hours until school starts. For one, at least. The Little Man doesn’t go back until next week – which is going to be fun when Brother goes off tomorrow and he doesn’t. I’m sure I’ll miss them eventually, but right now I just want to shove them out the door.

My productivity was up this week as I started to pull my brain out of the summer haze and do serious work on a project before flitting off to the next one. Don’t worry – there’s still way too many projects going on at once – I just made sure I finished one major step on each one before working on another.

The finish, of course, was this month’s t-shirt quilt. Delivered, blogged, totally on schedule!

Then I made all the Not-Quite-Flower blocks and threw them on the design wall for a stewing period. They first went up the with strong reds on the outsides, but after moving this one here and that one there, I think I like this layout better. But not enough to commit and sash them up quite yet. Maybe a design wall isn’t that helpful…

Then I pulled out my scrap solid bin and started the long process of piecing two Minecraft quilts. I’m approaching this one as a Block of the Week – I need 12 for the commission quilt and 16 for the Dude’s quilt, with some block overlap. {Both want creepers. Obviously.} I’ll tackle everything I can from the scrap bin before I have to order the rest of the fabric.

And finally on the piecing side, I decided on the dancing sashing for my churn dashes, so I slowly started them as leader/enders. It’ll be interesting to see how it looks – it’s not a setting I’ve ever done before.

My final project was getting this little doll quilt quilted and partially bound. My husband might be going to visit family this month, so I want to get some of the birthday and Christmas presents done to send with him. Saving shipping! Which means my binding list will finally be knocked down!

This little piece was made from the leftover cuttings from A Princess Picnic. Every princess needs a matching quilt for her dolly, right?

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

WiP – T-shirts and UFOs


Sewing work was a bit slow last week, as we had VBS in the mornings, and several afternoons I was just too darn tired to do anything else. I think our church holds VBS this “late” in the season to remind us what teachers are about to go through, and to be nicer to them. I know I will be.

One more week until school is in session around here, and I will have two days of complete freedom! You know, to go to the grocery store without having to get the car cart.

So stitching last week was limited to the t-shirt quilt, which was finished up for quilting on Saturday.

And now the binding is all prepped and it will be a finished quilt by Friday! The client wanted it to be a surprise, so no pictures lingering about the internet, just in case.

A photo posted by Kate (@katiemaequilts) on

I also quilted the Halloween scrap quilt, continuing the very subtle theme with pumpkins. Pumpkins are fun to quilt.

Then I worked on my Not-Quite-Flower blocks, not getting terribly far because some of the pieces I needed were buried in the debris from the great sewing room move. I finally unearthed the yardage and the last three should be finished up this week.

And then finally, during the move, I made stacks and stacks and stacks of UFOs. Once things were fairly settled {sort of}, I grabbed one – the RSC’14 – and got to work. The original plan for sashing and cornerstones involved extensive piecing – similar to the nine patch cornerstones about halfway down this page.

But that meant I had to cut a billion or so 1.5″ strips from my scraps, and I kept putting it off. Plus, really, 3″ sashing on 9″ blocks is a little much, and there’s so much color from the churn dashes anyway. So I scrapped the first plan and decided to go with plain old sashing – especially since I adore the sashing fabric anyway.

Of course, now, I’m debating the “dancing sashing” from Bonnie Hunter. Then I don’t have to match up the short sashing seams across the looooooong sashing seams. And I don’t have to cut long sashing, and pin long sashing, and basically, deal with long sashing. And it gives the churn dashes a bit more movement.

I don’t have to make the decision for a few days – I’ve still got plenty of short sashing to sew – but if you have an opinion, feel free to share. Unless it’s the extensive piecing sashing. Then your opinion doesn’t count.

See also: Oh ScrapBoMs Away, Design Wall Monday, Monday Making, Main Crush MondayFabric Tuesday, Scraptastic Tuesday, Rainbow Scrap Challenge, WiP on Wednesdays, WiP Wednesday

WiP – Separation of Kid and State


First, the cat is still alive. Eating lots and generally acting like he wasn’t dying. He’s still terribly skinny and unhealthy looking, though – so who knows?

The other news this week was I finally snapped after stepping on the millionth toy car that kept appearing between my sewing machine and ironing board. Even though there was a huge space just past that.

And so we separated, using the toy storage unit and kitchen and my fabric bookshelves as a double-wide barrier. I’m still in the process of getting everything in order – on both sides – but it’s already making me happier. I sacrificed the window light for wall space, which means…

…I finally found a wall to put up my design wall! And Flower! Which is, like so many other things this summer, going horribly awry. The middle block is correct. All the rest? Wrong-o! Since I didn’t discover it until five blocks in, I’m just going to finish the blocks “wrong” and leave the right block in the middle. Sigh.

So I’ll be using all my concentration to put together my t-shirt quilt correctly! Everything is cut out, the backing is the green, and the gold is filler to make the quilt a bit bigger.

And that’s pretty much all I’m working on! Although I’m finding ALL the WiPs as I reorganize, so I’m making a long list of what to do next.

See also: Oh Scrap @ Quilting is More Fun Than HouseworkBoMs Away at What a Hoot,Fabric Tuesday @ Quilt Story, Scraptastic Tuesday @ Mrs Sew and Sow

WiP – the Cat


Well, the last two weeks have been a little off for me. Almost two weeks ago, my old man cat, Tycho, stopped eating. We took him to the vet, but he was in liver failure and she gave him 1-2 weeks to live, cautioning it was likely to be on the shorter side.

We started giving him fluids, and…last Tuesday, I was positive that he had hours left. His body was actually getting colder to the touch. I slept on the couch with him at night because I didn’t want to not be there for him.

And then…Friday evening, he started eating again. And he’s back to a normal cat temperature. And though he’s still walking around slowly, he’s actually walking around.

So I have no idea if this is a brief reprieve, or if he’s actually okay for now. We’re taking it day by day, and I’m getting back into a routine of doing things. Other than laying on the couch watching him breathe.

So anyway – obviously – my sewing has been a little off. I did manage to get a bit done in the last two weeks, though!

I made this top for Chelle’s Quilts as a tester – and tested it big, to Quilts of Valor dimensions. Perfect size. – 63×72″ – and a very easy pattern. Definitely on my list for my next scrappy QOV!

Oh, and in case you couldn’t tell, I went for a very subtle Halloween theme. Very subtle.

I finished off my Broadway mini quilt swap and sent it out. There’s a backstory I’ll get into at the end of this week – it’s not quite as plain as it looks.

I got the binding on this baby quilt and shipped it off to my friend. I don’t usually use poly-batting, but that’s what she sent, and it is adorably puffy. The quilting stands out well, though it’s still soft and drape-y. My friend pieced this top about ten years ago, and finally gave up on the idea of finishing it herself. Happy to assist!

And then I dragged out another WiP – Flower – from earlier this year and got to work finishing it up. Apparently I was good enough to match stripe directions – go me! I think I sorted out all the block pieces so that I can make one or two a day as I have time.

{I’m also steadily working on two t-shirt quilts, but ironing interfacing isn’t that awesome to show.}

And finally, I’m reaching the end of the pile of QOV red/white leaders/enders, so I made a practice block to test my pressing instructions. Perfection! Now to trim that stack of HSTs…

And I know I got terribly far behind on emails with the whole cat thing. I promise to catch up in the next day or so. Bear with me!

See also: Oh Scrap @ Quilting is More Fun Than HouseworkBoMs Away at What a Hoot, Fabric Tuesday @ Quilt Story, Scraptastic Tuesday @ Mrs Sew and Sow