Monday, August 26, 2019

Even More Mini Quilts!

Recently, our Mini Quilt Group met again after taking a break over the summer.  Two members actually completed their "homework" -- 100 half-square triangles that finish at 1" square.  One of them even quilted and bound their quilt.  WOW!  You go, Mary Lee!

The gold and blue below one belongs to Gaynel.

  Mine is the red and blue one below with the folded up corner.

August's Project 

Our project for this month was a pair of pin cushions from our book, Vintage Patchwork by Pam Buda. I didn't want to overwhelm everyone after a month off and following our HUGE 12" HST mini.

I was kind of surprised that some of the group memebers had never made a pin cushion so we took a little time to talk about what to do after you made your little pieced pin cushion top.


  • If you are planning to quilt your pin cushion top, then layer the top with a light batting (I don't usually use a piece of backing fabric when I quilt a pin cushion because it will have a bottom piece later).  Pin or press the layers together.

  • Machine or hand quilt as desired.   As we are talking about a 5" square, you'll want to choose a simple quilting pattern like stippling or wavy lines.  Straight line or quilting in the ditch work too.  You could also explore some of your special stitches on your sewing machine.

  • After quilting, square up your pin cushion top/batting.

  • Place a piece of backing fabric right sides together with the pin cushion top.  Pin the edges if you need to.

  • Leaving an opening that is at least a few inches in length, stitch all the way around the outside.

  • Clip the corners and turn right side out through the opening.

  • STUFF your pin cushion.  There are lots of different materials that you can stuff your pin cushion with, I do not suggest you stuff it with rice or beans or another food item as it might drawn insects.  STUFF your pin cushion until you can't stuff it any more then stuff it a little bit more.  My favorite stuffing tool is a chopstick.

  • Whip-stitch the opening closed.

  • Voila!  A pin cushion.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Tricia's Favorite Block Tutorials -- Block 8 CHURN DASH

It's time for Block Number 8 in my Favorite Block Tutorials.  I hope that you've been following along and maybe even trying out some of these fun blocks.

Here are the links for the previous 7 blocks if you have missed one:

Block 1

Block 2

Block 3

Block 4

Block 5

Block 6

Block 7

Now that you're all caught up, let's make Block 8 --

Churn Dash


The Churn Dash Block is an old favorite of mine.  I have made many quilts using this block.  One of my most interesting ones was called Halloween Dash and was published in Quilter's World Magazine some years ago.

Can you see the spiderweb machine quilting motifs in the middle of the big Church Dash blocks?  Aren't they sew cute?

What you need:

Light:  2 squares 4 7/8" x 4 7/8", 1 square 4 1/2" x 4 1/2", and 4 rectangles 2 1/2" x 4 1/2"

Medium/Dark:  2 squares 4 7/8" x 4 7/8" and 4 rectangles 2 1/2" x 4 1/2"

Here's what you do:

1.   Layer a light 4 7/8" square right sides together with a medium/dark 4 7/8" square.  Drawn a diagonal line from one corner to the opposite corner.  Sew 1/4" away from both sides of the drawn line.  Cut apart on the drawn line.  Open triangle squares and press.  Make 4 triangle squares.

2.  Sew a light 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangle long sides together with a medium/dark 2 1/2" x 4 1/2" rectangle.  Make 4.

3.  Sew the block together like a Nine Patch.

4.  And you're done!

Monday, August 5, 2019

Finding Treasures in My Quilt Studio

This summer I have taken a little break from actually sewing and making quilts.  Not because it’s hot or because I’m too busy, but because I am playing with my giant collection of antique and vintage quilt stuff.  I say quilt stuff because my collection has quilts, tops, partial tops, blocks, partial blocks, unfinished projects and blocks, as well as piles and piles of FABRIC!  I am having the most wonderful time and I don’t even have to go anywhere.  Summer Vacation at home!

I started this project in June when my quilt guild president, Kim, mentioned at our meeting that she wished someone would do a program about feedsacks because she just loves them.  That got me  thinking because I knew that I had some feedsack-type stuff hidden in my vintage stash.  So I volunteered to do a presentation on feedsacks for our guild.  Kim was thrilled.  We haven’t discussed a date yet, which is good, because I am still sorting through my stash.  Once I get through my stash of feedsack stuff, I’ll devote a blog post to showing you my goodies.  I had no idea when I volunteered that it was going to be so intensive or as fun.

I think I have delved into 7 or 8 of my crates already and I know I have more to go, including several crates of quilts yet.  It’s funny — I had no idea how much stuff I’ve accumulated over the years.  As I got it, I admired it, washed it (sometimes) and tucked it away lovingly into a plastic storage crate.   Then when the current crate was filled, I bought another crate and the whole process was repeated.  It is so exciting to open up a crate and discover such awesome treasures!

Here are the contents of the most recent crate I opened.  Seriously, ALL this stuff came out of 1 Rubbermaid 18 gallon crate.  It was all so smushed in there — I have no idea how I got it all in there. I found fabric galore, a few quilt top fragments, and even some feedsacks.  Most of it all dated from 1930s-1960s, which just so happens to be one of my very quilting eras!

Below are 2 of my favorite fabrics that I discovered in the crate.  Aren't they the cutest?????  I just love little conversational prints.

Isn't the penguin great?  How about a squirrel in pants, the deer in the scarf, or the bunny in a jacket?  Any idea why the puppy is included on this fabric????  Anyone?

Check out these happy little birdies.  Don't you just love them?  They have adorable facial expressions. 

Well, I'd better get back to work because right now I'm up to my waist in fabric!