Carpenter Star bed quilt

Mary and I worked together to make a bed quilt (queen size) as an anniversary gift for one of our relatives.

It was a surprise gift and we knew that purple was a favorite color.  So we went to the fabric store and found some purple fabric but we needed an accent color plus white for the background.  Since some of the purple print fabric had teal, we chose teal for the accent color – we do like teal.  

Mary made all the half-square triangle blocks and sewed the center motif of the Carpenter Star quilt pattern.  I quilted the center motif and then added borders using a quilt as you go technique.  Mary finished the quilt with the binding.

Keep having fun sewing and quilting.

Donna and Mary

Progress on Fire Island Hosta quilt pattern designed by Judy Niemeyer)

I have started work on the Fire Island Hosta paper piecing quilt pattern that I bought last year.  I can’t believe that I actually bought the pattern but the quilt looks stunning at the quilt show.  Now the challenge is to complete the quilt.  In June, I sorted all the fabric into bags by the sections of the quilt. In July, I completed 2 sections (8 pieces per section).  Once all the cutting of the templates is completed, the sewing is easy since you just sew on the line.  I did follow the tips in the pattern which were helpful.  I set up a small iron and cutting board by my sewing machine so that it is easy to press and trim as you sew along.  My goal is to complete the quilt top by next April.  So I will try to keep working on the quilt each month until the top is finished.  The colors in the quilt will be white, yellow, green, blue-green, and blue. Hopefully the colors will all work together.  I will keep you posted on my progress.  Keep having fun sewing and quilting.  Donna

Not your average Sampler quilt


A couple of years ago I took a sampler class to learn more piecing techniques.    I selected southwest colors (turquoise, rust, & brown) and fabrics with the intent of making a new quilt for our guest bedroom (queen size).

Traditional Sampler layout






After I finished the twelve 12″ blocks (+2 extras) I put them in a UFO box.   I didn’t really want to just add sashing to make the traditional sampler quilt.

In January,  I pulled it out of my UFO project box and started looking at ideas on the internet for sampler layouts.

I finally landed on a Moda design (Modern Building Blocks) that I really liked.   The layout was free online:

I also bought the pattern as the pattern required some really BIG blocks and I didn’t find BIG blocks online.

I started adapting the pattern/layout for my design.

12″ blocks extended to 18″ blocks



Phase 1 – the design only needed nine 12″ blocks and I had fourteen.   It did need five 18″ blocks, so at a quilt retreat I took five of my 12″ blocks and extended them to 18″ blocks (with the color/design input from my quilting retreat friends).

36″ BIG block



Phase 2 – Make BIG blocks.   I made a two 36″,  one 30″, and a 24″ block.    I did make some measurement errors and one of my 36″ blocks turned out to actually be 38″.

Phase 3 – Make a mix of smaller blocks to fill in the design.




Working on layout



Phase 4Layout.  I arranged my blocks on floor.   I did use some fillers (strips) to place between block and to assist in the connection of blocks.

Sectioned of quilt, ready to be quilted




Phase 5 – Quilting.   Donna volunteered to do stippling and use a quilt-as-you-go technique.   It was a busy quilt so I didn’t want the quilting to be the star and felt that simple stippling would be good.   In order for her to quilt it more easily on a domestic machine, I sewed the blocks together in 3 large sections.   Then she could quilt the 3 separate sections before attaching them together.



Here’s the finished queen size quilt.

Finished Quilt

On the bed in our guest bedroom.

My finished quilt is not exactly like the pattern.   I used the pattern more as inspiration and tweaked the layout to meet my blocks and the size I wanted.   I learned a lot on this project and am happy with the result.    I’m also happy that another UFO is complete.

I plan on making some decorative pillows for the futon (in the same room) with some of the leftover fabric.

Happy Stitching’,


Ps.   This is my favorite block in the quilt

Favorite block






Polaroid quilt swap

My blocks for the swap

Our quarterly bee was celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.  So one member came up with the idea to make 20 polaroid squares that we could swap at our next meeting and then make a quilt.  Eight members participated so they made 160 blocks to swap.  I made 100 blocks and Mary helped me finish the second half of the blocks.  At our meeting this month we swapped the blocks.  It was fun seeing the different blocks in the swap.  Our next goal is to complete a quilt top with these blocks by our December meeting.  I will have to look for some quilt ideas on the internet.  Will keep you posted.  Keep having fun sewing and quilting. Donna

Back from our quilt guild’s retreat – part 1

Mary and I went to our quilt guild’s annual retreat last week (3 night retreat along the NC coast) with 40 quilters.  We had great weather considering that it is February.  I worked on some projects that I had started at our quilting retreat in January. image I finished quilting and binding a baby charity quilt and the mittens (Herky Jerky) wall hanging. imageimage I continued working on making squares using selvages in red and blue for a border on a Quilt of Valor. image Here is a website with 25 sewing projects using selvages: image I also continued working on a modern Disappearing 9 patch using patriotic fabrics – the selvage squares will be the border to this quilt.  Mary and I also made  paper piecing log cabin blocks for the next year’s raffle quilt. Here is my block. image Several members of a quilt bee bought paper piecing patterns and batik scraps for retreat members to make some blocks.  About 20 blocks were made during retreat.  There was a demo on making a fabric collage greeting card.image  I made a card with a beach scene but I still need to add stitching and embellishments to the card.  We played games on two nights.  One game was called ” Right, Left, Center”  I won one of the games and the prize was 33 assorted 10″ squares.  imageIt was fun to play the games but also fun to win the fabric too – especially a bird print that I really liked. Keep having fun sewing and quilting.  Donna

Turning Twenty Asian bed quilt

imageMary and I worked on a bed quilt for one of our younger brothers.  He likes Asian fabric so we went through our stash to find some red and black Asian fabrics and then Mary found some more fabric online.

A quilter friend gave us a large piece of Asian fabric which we used for the back.  image




We started this quilt in January during our guild retreat.  The design of the quilt is a variation of the Turning Twenty quilt pattern.

After we made the blocks, I sewed the blocks into 3 sections of 2 rows of blocks each.  I used a Quilt-As-You-Go technique that I saw on Leah Day’s tutorial on Youtube.  I used free motion stippling to quilt the 3 sections and used wool batting for this quilt.  I made quilting strips from the scraps of fabric left over from the blocks for the front joining strips and used black fabric for the backing joining strips. image

Mary used black fabric to make the binding.  Hope he will enjoy his new bed quilt.

Keep having fun sewing and quilting.


Syracuse University lap quilt

image       I made this quilt for one of my brothers who turned 60 earlier this month.  He enjoys watching Syracuse University’s basketball team so I found some sports team fabric on line.  It is very bright orange and blue so I found some other fabrics to tone down the bright orange.image I was a quick quilt to make – a four patch and then large square with the theme fabric.   The quilt is a lap throw size.  Since he also enjoys watching football games,  I put football theme flannel on the back of the quilt.  Hope he enjoys his lap quilt.  Keep sewing and quilting.  Donna