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Saturday, April 28, 2012

Home Sweet Home – Truffula Tree Sashing Tutorial

010Last week, I took my two oldest daughter’s to see The Lorax in the theatre.  They both LOVED the movie and I enjoyed it as well.  If you haven’t seen it – one of the main parts of the movie is about the Truffala Trees – and I must say – I wish I could grow them here!  They’re so beautiful!!  When I came up with this sashing it reminded me of the gorgeous Truffula Trees and I realized it was the prefect name!  I only wish naming blocks was always this easy!

Cutting Instructions

Tree Top

1 – 3.5” x 3.5” square

4 – 1.5” x 1.5” sky squares


1 – 1.5” x 9.5” brown strip

2 – 1.5” x 9.5” grass strips

Sewing Instructions


Make the Tree Top following the same method that I showed you in the Trees in Blossom tutorial.  For the trunk, sew a grass strip to either side of the trunk strip.  Iron towards the trunk.  Sew the Tree Top piece to the Trunk piece to create a fabulous Truffala Tree Sashing!

013You can see my Truffula Tree Sashing here next to the Scrappy Trees Block! 

Don’t forget to enter my Giveaway!  Open until May 2nd!

A Birthday, A Book Review and a GIVEAWAY

Happy Saturday everyone!  More importantly -

FIP - April 2012

photo’s by Friends in Photography 

Happy FIRST Birthday to my beautiful baby, Persimoni Mae (we call her Pip!)

I had to get that in there before I get down to business.  Now – I’m happy to be sharing my thoughts on a new book that I read ‘Ties That Bind’ from Marie Bostwick for the Blog Hop organized through the Quilting Gallery. 

TIES THAT BINDI am an avid reader.  I love to read books with a great story so I can just escape’ into another world.  I’ll admit – my husband doesn’t really like when I get into a book because I’m really good at not hearing everything else going on around me.  I’ve found that this has been a helpful technique when  I’m driving somewhere with a carload of screaming children.  I was immediately sucked into this book since it was very well written with a great story line. 

I identify with Mariposa even though we don’t hear from her personally in the story.  I’ve always been a bit of a ‘black sheep’ being independent and opinionated. 

This is the first of Marie’s books that I have read but I am about to go on the hunt for the rest of them.  I really enjoyed this and I would love to see what happened before this book.  Although I did easily follow the story without have read the previous books in the series.

Why would I recommend that you read this novel?

Family, Love, Children, Faith, Quilting   

Phillipa, one of the characters, signs up to make a baby quilt as her first quilt. To see and read about one of my favorite baby quilts that I’ve made be sure to head over to the Quilting Gallery Site.  I sort of took a beginner quilting class when I first started.  It was at my future mother-in-law’s house on Tuesday nights.  I would work on my quilt and she cooked us dinner!  It was the best of both worlds – especially when you’re a college student – hard to beat a good meal.  The boys would do the dishes while Diane looked over my work and taught me new steps.  It definitely inspired me to continue to quilt and once I got my very first sewing machine – there was no stopping me!


Book Synopsis:

Christmas is fast approaching, and New Bern, Connecticut, is about to receive the gift of a new pastor, hired sight unseen to fill in while Reverend Tucker is on sabbatical. Meanwhile, Margot Matthews' friend, Abigail, is trying to match-make even though Margot has all but given up on romance. She loves her job at the Cobbled Court Quilt Shop and the life and friendships she's made in New Bern; she just never thought she'd still be single on her fortieth birthday.
It's a shock to the entire town when Phillip A. Clarkson turns out to be Philippa. Truth be told, not everyone is happy about having a female pastor. Yet despite a rocky start, Philippa begins to settle in—finding ways to ease the townspeople's burdens, joining the quilting circle, and forging a fast friendship with Margot. When tragedy threatens to tear Margot's family apart, that bond—and the help of her quilting sisterhood—will prove a saving grace. And as she untangles her feelings for another new arrival in town, Margot begins to realize that it is the surprising detours woven into life's fabric that provide its richest hues and deepest meaning…


Have you heard enough that you are going to run out and buy your very own copy!?  You don’t have to YET!  Enter to win your very own copy simply by leaving me a comment telling me what your favorite book is.  Be sure to leave your email address – if I can’t get a hold of you – no prize.   I will be drawing the winner on May 2nd, so be sure to get your comment in now! 

Did my review make you really excited about this book?  Do you want more chances to WIN it?  Head over to the other ‘Blog Hopper’s’ and be sure to enter their giveaway too!

Blog Hop Schedule:

Tuesday, April 24

Michele - Quilting Gallery

Jackie - Canton Village Quilt Works

Wendy - Ivory Spring

Wednesday, April 25

Jennifer - SewHooked

Erin - One Piece at a Time

Thursday, April 26

Victoria - Bumble Beans Inc.

Sandi - A Legacy of Stitches

Friday, April 27

Michele - With Heart and Hands

Melissa - Lilac Lane

Saturday, April 28

Melissa - Sew Bitter Sweet Designs

Kim – Kim’s Crafty Apple

Hide and Seek Baby Quilt Pattern

Also, a special surprise will be available soon on Marie's site.  When you register as a reading friend on Marie's site you will be able to download, for FREE!

Hide and Seek copy

Deb Tucker from Studio 180 Designs  created this adorable Hide and Seek Baby Quilt to go with the book.

It’s a beautiful quilt pattern!  But just know that

it is not quite ready yet so stay TUNED!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Home Sweet Home – Birds in the Bushes Sashing Tutorial

012Here’s a new block using the ‘snowball’ I showed in the Trees in Blossom tutorial.  We’re going to make 4 Tree Top blocks and sew them together for ‘bushes’. 

Cutting Instructions

Bush (green birds): 4 – 3.5” x 3.5”

Corners A.:8 – 1.5” x 1.5”

Corners B.: 8 – 1.25” x 1.25”

Follow the instructions for Tree Tops in the Trees in Blossom tutorial to add the corners to the bush fabric. 

011Once you have your four 3.5” blocks made sew them all together to make yet another sashing!  013

You can see the ‘Birds in the Bushes’ Sashing between the blocks Two Trees and Scrappy Trees.

The sashings for the Home Sweet Home Quilt Along are coming along nicely – you should see my design wall!  More tutorials coming soon!   

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Home Sweet Home – Trees in Blossom Bonus Sashing

We’ll be using the following technique for quite a few of our sashings – but no worries – it’s easy peasy!

Cutting Instructions:

Tree Tops (Floral Fabric): 2 – 3.5” x 3.5”

Sky: 8 – 1.25” x 1.25”

Trunk (brown) – 2 – 1” x 3.5”

Grass (brown) – 4 -  1.75” x 3.5”


TREE TOP:001002











Step 1  - Using a water soluble pen mark a diagonal on each of your sky squares.   003Step 2.  Straight stitch along these lines on each corner of your tree fabric blocks.  004

Step 3.  Trim off the outer corners.    005Step 4.  Iron corners back to make a 3.5-inch square.

Step 5.  Repeat with the other Tree and Sky fabrics.


007Step 6.  Sew the Grass Rectangles onto both sides of the Trunk rectangles.

Step 7.  Iron away from the Trunk

Step 8: Repeat with other trunk fabrics.   008

Step 9: Sew all 4 blocks together to create a 3.5” x 12.5” Sashing Strip

Monday, April 23, 2012

BOM & QAL’s – Monday Update

Hi everyone!  How are things going?  Things are good around here and I’m excited to show you the little bit of progress I’ve made on my BOM and QAL blocks.  For some reason I didn’t have much sewing time last week but I’m having a hard time remembering what I was doing…


Home Sweet Home Quilt Along

Home Sweet Home Quilt Along - 16 blocks PLUS 4 Bonus Blocks - I'm in LOVE!

There are TWENTY Block tutorials up now!  Which means – you can finish your quilt (if you wanted 20 blocks – if you were okay with less you should be fine already :)  I have all of mine made and now I’m working like made to make up my sashings and cornerstones.  I didn’t realize there were 49 sashings that to be made – and I’m going to make them all different…I have a bit of work to do.  But if you’ve been watching the block you’ve probably noticed that the sashing tutorials are being posted faster than before.  I think I have at least five photo’d and ready for their write up so hopefully this part goes quickly.  I’m super happy with how this quilt is turning out – I think it’s going to be such a fun one!

I would LOVE to see how yours is coming along!  PLEASE post your block photo’s to the flickr Group:  Home Sweet Home Quilt Along Flickr Group:

Blogger’s BOM Quilt Along from Canton Village Quilt Works AND New York Beauty- A Paper Piecing Quilt Along, AND Mariner’s Compass Experiments

BOM Blocks - 20 done!  From the Quilter's BOM, the New York Beauty QAL, and my own personal mariner's compass experiments

I have two of every block made for the Blogger’s BOM. If I remember correctly a new block tutorial will be up on the 25th – just two days away!  I’m still moving a bit slower on the New York Beauty Quilt Along but did manage to make two more since the last post.  I think these are really going to add some jazz to this piece – and I can’t believe I’m actually making them – I never saw myself doing this ever!

I still only have the sole Mariner’s Compass Block done from the aid of Chris Lynn Kirsch’s class and her new self-published book, Compass Capers.  I will definitely be making at least one more of these for this piece.

You can see what everyone else’s blocks for the BOM look like in the flickr group:

and for the New York Beauty Quilt Along in this flickr group:

The Craftsy Block of the Month

Craftsy BOM Progress - First 8 blocks

I finished the April English Paper Piece Blocks and have found a new love of English Paper piecing while doing it! They were both really fun blocks to make! 

And here’s the Craftsy Block of the Month Flickr Group if you want to see what others’ looks like:


Next up: the BOM from FabricFascination.  Sometime’s BOM’s are nice to just have the fabric all sent already precut for you – and that’s exactly what I’m doing with this one.  Nothing new from me…yet…

Blocks 1 -4:  Fabric Fascination Quilt Along


Do you know of any great quilt-alongs I should add to my list?  I’m always looking for more to expand my skills!  I’m especially looking for ones that are 8-inch block size so I can use up more scraps! 

‘ties that bind’ by Marie Bostwick – a blog hop book tour

This week a Blog Hop Book Tour is starting for Marie Bostwick’s new book ‘ties that bind’.  I’m excited to be one of the reviewers that Michelle of the Quilting Gallery picked.  When you come back to see what I think on Saturday, April 28th (aka the day Pip turns ONE!  Can you believe it!?  My beautiful little babe is going to be ONE!) – you’ll be able to enter for a chance to win you’re very own copy!

TIES THAT BINDNot only can you enter for a chance to win a copy on my blog on Saturday but there are 10 other bloggers that are reviewing the book for you all and giving you a chance to win your own copy as well.  Below I’ve listed the schedule of the review and giveaway.  Have fun and hop along with us!


Blog Hop Schedule:

Tuesday, April 24

Michele - Quilting Gallery

Jackie - Canton Village Quilt Works

Wendy - Ivory Spring

Wednesday, April 25

Jennifer - SewHooked

Erin - One Piece at a Time

Thursday, April 26

Victoria - Bumble Beans Inc.

Sandi - A Legacy of Stitches

Friday, April 27

Michele - With Heart and Hands

Melissa - Lilac Lane

Saturday, April 28

Melissa - Sew Bitter Sweet Designs

Kim – Kim’s Crafty Apple

Friday, April 20, 2012

Home Sweet Home – Hexagon Forest Sashing

Have you discovered the Craftsy Block of the Month by Amy Gibson yet?  If you are a quilter or ever dreamed of quilting this is the prefect block of the month for everyone!  Each month Amy goes over a different quilt technique with a video.  It’s really easy to understand and follow and I’ve already learned quite a few new techniques.

Something I’ve tried before was English Paper Piecing.  I’ll admit I was not excited to do the English Paper Piecing blocks – it just wasn’t my thing.  BUT I’m not a quitter and I had to do it.  I watched Amy’s tutorial and she didn’t differently than I had before so I did it her way.  What a difference it made!  I am now in love with making these fabulous Hexagons.  So far, I’ve made up one sashing tutorial using the hexagons with plan for a second using slightly bigger ones. 

It’s free to sign up to be a Craftsy Member and the Block of the Month Program is also free.  I’m going to recommend that you watch Amy’s tutorial to see how to make these hexagon’s.  (PS. when you become a member be sure to follow me so you can see my projects and blocks as I go!)

Cutting Instructions:

1 – 12.5” x 3.5” Strip

5 – 2.5” Squares (Tree tops)

5 – 2” x .5” ‘trunks’ that will be fused to your main fabric (I put the fusible on my fabric before I cut it – seems to be easier). 

5 – 3/4-inch hexagon templates

007You can see above that I have my five fabrics and my five templates.  059I used Amy’s Instructions to created five hexagons and I sewed them all together in a row.    060Once they were starched and ironed I cut my basting stitches out 061And pulled the templates out as well.  (You can save these for future projects if you’d like…who knows…there may be more sashing’s with them) 062 Next, I used a washable glue stick to put my hexagons where I want them on my fabric.  063Before I sewed them down, I fused my tree trunks so they overlapped under them.  As you can see I cut mine at a wonky 1/2-inch x 2-inches.  I thought it added a bit more dimension to the trees.   I blanket stitched the outer edge of the hexagon strip and the right side of the trunks.  I used a straight line stitch to stitch the left side of the trunks.  I’m really happy with this fun and whimsical sashing!064Here it is finished with Block 4 – My Tilted House above it and Block 8 - A Wonky Modern House below it.  (Wonky Modern House was actually inspired by the February blocks of the Craftsy Block of the Month)


I hope you have fun with this sashing!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Home Sweet Home – BONUS Block – Acid Cottage from Love Affair with My Brother

It’s been almost four months since the ‘tree and house’ quilt wouldn’t leave my dreams and turned itself into the Home Sweet Home Quilt Along.  With today’s block tutorial we’ll have enough blocks to make a 20 block quilt – or a 16 block quilt or a 12 block quilt or a pillowcase – whatever you desire!  I’ve learned a few things along the way of my first quilt along but mostly I’ve been inspired by the collaboration of all the different designers.  I just love that we have a wonderful mix of people from not only all over the US but in actuality – all over the world.  I have a all of my blocks (well – 19 of them so far… I should have 20 up by the end of the day if I utilize my time during Pip’s nap well) on my design wall and every time I walk by them I smile. 

Okay – enough gushing, let’s get on with it!

I have another fabulous designer today – Love Affair with My Brother.  I’ll admit – when I first saw the name of her blog I HAD to find out what was going on with her – Love Affair with my BROTHER!?  Who would blog about that!?  I’ll admit – I tend to be a bit slow on the uptake sometimes.  If you’re like me – be sure to check out her ‘About Me’ page to see what’s really going on. 

Keep an eye on Sunni and her Brother by following her online endeavors:

And now I won’t make you wait any longer…time for the final block of the quilt along…

Acid Cottage

House Quilt Block

Click HERE to go to Sunni’s blog to see the entire block and for instructions on how to create the next fabulous block in our quilt!

Don’t forget to add your picture to the flickr group once it’s complete:

Previous Home Sweet Home Blocks:

I’m sure once I get this final block made my butt will really get into gear making up sashings for the quilt.  I’m really not good at leaving projects unfinished – they’re always nagging at my dreams which doesn’t leave room for new ideas to emerge.  So be sure to keep watching for sashing ideas!  I can’t wait to see what everyone’s quilts end up like!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Home Sweet Home – Shoo Fly Sashing

Thankfully Diane has been working diligently to put together some sashing tutorials for the Home Sweet Home Quilt Along.  I drew out my quilt layout with 20 main blocks (16 scheduled and 4 bonus) and I need to come up with 29 different sashing designs!  Ahhh!  I came up with about 6 more yesterday afternoon but I still have to write them all up.  This is going to be an interesting challenge!

Shoo Fly Sashing by Diane Lapacek


WARNING: These are those teeny tiny pieces that drive Kim crazy.

I had some unused half square triangles stuffed in a drawer, so I just squared them up to size. This is a great place to use them.

Cutting instructions:

Dark fabrics:

· Cut 8 2” squares

· Cut 4 1½“ squares

Light Fabrics:

· Cut 8 2” squares

· Cut 16 1½” squares

First, we’ll use the 2” squares to make half square triangles.


Draw a diagonal line on the back side of each light square.


Place two squares right sides together and stitch ¼” on each side of the drawn line.


Cut on the drawn line.


Press seams toward the darker fabric.


Square up to 1½” square.


Sew a 1½” light square to each end of a 1½” dark square. Make 4 units.


Sew a 1 ½” light square between 2 half square triangle. Make 8 units.


Sew rows together to make 4 shoo fly blocks.


Sew the blocks together in a row to complete your sashing.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

RAW Madison Stimulus Video & Guest Blogger

I’m really excited to be sharing with you the video that was made when I was a featured artist at last months’ RAW Madison Stimulus Show:

I would love to hear what you think!

The show was an amazing event and there’s another one tomorrow night – Menagerie.  It looks to be another fabulous time so if you can make it you should head on down! 

quilting-gallery-250 Also – I did a guest post for Quilting Blogger today on making ATC's from Orphan Quilt Blocks.  Be sure to head on over to see what I had to say!

Home Sweet Home – String a Flower Garden Sashing Bonus

Continuing on in the sashing tutorials for the Home Sweet Home Quilt Along – Diane has come up with a few really fun additions.  Here’s the first one from her:

String a Flower Garden Sashing

from Diane Lapacek


I chose a wide variety of bright fabric strings to make this Flower Garden sashing.

Cutting Instructions:

· An assortment of fabric strings. They should be at least ¾” wide and no wider than 2”. These are small pieces, so narrow strips will work best. They do not need to be straight.

· 4 paper foundations 3½” x 3½”. Any paper will work, but something lightweight like newspaper will be easier to remove.


Lay one of your strings diagonally across the first foundation paper.


Lay another strip right sides together with the first, linig up one edge.


Stitch and press.

Continue to add strips to each side until the paper is covered. Make sure each strip goes past the edge of the paper.


Yes, I know this is not the same block. I seem to have a hard time remembering to take pictures. clip_image012

Remove the paper. My 4 year old granddaughter, Capri, did this for me. She loves this job and is very good at it and I don’t think it’s all that fun so it works out great for both of us.

Spray starch the piece lightly and press it flat.

Square it up to 3½”.


Make 3 more squares.


Join the squares together to form a row and you’re done.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Home Sweet Home – BONUS Block – Rippling Pond from Marcia’s Crafty Sewing & Quilting

Quilts 2012 4 9 to 11 123 (Medium) Happy Monday everyone!  Today is going to be my ‘Monday Birthday Celebration’ and I plan on quilting all day!  The girls are heading to the sitter and I’ll be in my room playing away and I can’t wait!!!  One of the things I’ll be working on is this fabulous new bonus block from Marcia’s Crafty Sewing & Quilting.  She pointed out that we really needed a pond in our Home Sweet Home Quilt Along – and of course – she was right on!

Be sure to head over to Marcia's blog and browse through all the fun going on.  It's time to link up your 'May For Me' BINGO Cards:  I made one - super fun and easy.  I'm sure there's still time for you to join in the fun!

Rippling Pond

Quilts 2012 4 9 to 11 111120 (Medium)

Click HERE to go to Marcia’s blog to see the entire block and for instructions on how to create the next fabulous block in our quilt!

Don’t forget to add your picture to the flickr group once it’s complete:

Previous Home Sweet Home Blocks:

LOTS of bonus sashing tutorials will be going up this week.  Diane made one up for this and I have quite a few I’m finishing the write-up’s on.  So be sure to stop by again soon!
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