A “Royal” Occasion

For those of you who don’t know, I live in the Kansas City area.  The Kansas City Royals have been batting to make it into the World Series.  And, tomorrow night they play the San Francisco Giants – of course, I am hoping for another “Royal” win.  For whatever reason, this quilt made me think of the Royals.

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Okay, maybe it’s really a “pitch” for the Pittsburg Steelers (different team, different game, and on the other side of the country), but it’s cool nonetheless.  If for no other reason than it is blue – cool color, but also the color of the Kansas City Royals.  :D

Nancy always tells me to quilt what ever I like, but I knew she wanted a piano key border.  I should have just stayed with the piano key but felt compelled to embellish it somehow, so the piano key became a bead-board with lace.  I think I would have been more precise with a simple piano key border.

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I could have quilted feathers all over this, but I work at adding variety to quilting.  And, since she wanted straight-line quilting in the borders, I needed to think of something else to compliment the borders.  So, I came up with this for the insides of the blocks.  It looks kind of regal, don’t you think?

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I love Nancy’s choices of colors for her quilts.  This one is no less stunning than any of her others.  The different shades of blues, yellows, and whites really pop on this quilt.

Garden Path

I recently quilted this quilt for Margaret, which she named “Garden Path.”

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If you look closely, you will find delightful colors and patterns of Japanese fabrics, many of them cut into strips and sewn together to create a harmonious path, of sorts, around the quilt top. I really like how she combined the colors of blue, taupe, purple and green and then set a back-and-forth pattern into this quilt.  She also chose the perfect thread for this quilt,  variegated blue and green.

Not wanting to detract from the quilt design, we decided that it would be best to quilt an allover, edge-to-edge design on this quilt.  I could have done some really cool custom quilting with Japanese symbols, etc., but it would have gotten lost in the quilt.  So, we went with a smooth “water-look” design.

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It was close-knit quilting, but Margaret is planning on hanging this piece on the wall in her living room.  The extra stitching may stiffen it up a bit, but it will also stabilize the quilt blocks that are set diagonally.

Here’s a look at the back.

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Urban and Amish

Urban and Amish; Classic Quilts and Modern Updates is written by Myra Harder.

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

Myra takes Amish quilts and shows you how to make them and than also offers a different, more modern approach to making the same kinds of blocks for each Amish block.  For example, she starts with the traditional “Pineapple” Block in traditional Amish colors.

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

Then she offers its more modern counterpart in large scale prints  and lighter colored backgrounds to give it a totally new look.

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

“Lone Star” as the Amish quilt…

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

And “Urban Ohio” as its modern counterpart…

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

“Trip Around the World” as the Amish quilt…

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

And, “Trip to New York” as its modern counterpart.  “Trip Around the World” is made by cutting strips and sewing them back together.  “Trip to New York” is made the same way (with strips), but in this quilt you see a more “urban” and modern quilt.

Martingale - Urban and Amish (Print version + eBook bundle)

All in all, I found this to be a very interesting book and enjoyed it very much.  It is well thought out and the instructions are clear-cut and easy to follow.  I think if you look into this book, it will spark your creativity in surprising ways.  To find out more about this book, go to Martingale’s website here.

Take 5 Fat Quarters

This book review is for all of those quilters who collect Fat Quarters and other Pre-Cuts.  “Take 5 Fat Quarters” is written by Kathy Brown.  Gather up your scraps and get ready to “roll” your rotary cutters.

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

The above quilt on the book cover is a larger quilt using 2 sets of 5 fat quarters plus background fabric, so don’t be afraid that all the quilts in this book are small.  Also included in this book are detailed instructions on quilt making for the newer quilter, so this would be a good book for a newbie or a gift to a newbie quilter.

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

This next quilt would make a great starter quilt for a newbie, but I’m not a newbie quilter and I love it for its simplicity and cheerful colors.

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

Here’s a table runner that looks like it has log cabin blocks, but the author shows you a time-saving short-cut for creating this look.

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

Another simple design…

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

But, I think this next one is my favorite. Given the name of the quilt pattern (T-Ball), I believe it’s supposed to look like T-shirts but my imagination says it also looks like kimonos.  Either way, it’s cute.

Martingale - Take 5 Fat Quarters (Print version + eBook bundle)

The patterns in this book use 5 fat quarters for quick and easy quilts, but many of them can also be made with Jelly Roll strips, so it’s a pretty handy book to have.  You can find out more about this book at Martingale’s website.

The New Hexagon

Written by Katja Marek, “The New Hexagon” was just released through Martingale Press.  Katja Marek takes hexagons, which have been all the rave,  a step farther by breaking them down into individual designs within each hexagon block.

Martingale - The New Hexagon (Print version + eBook bundle)

One thing I want you to notice in this Table of Contents is that, although there may be a lot of different blocks, Katja has devoted the first 20 pages, or so, to instructions and information all about English Paper Piecing from which kind of paper to use to stitching the pieces together.

Martingale - The New Hexagon (Print version + eBook bundle)

Each of the blocks includes a finished hexagon block and a full-size pattern to make your own.

Martingale - The New Hexagon (Print version + eBook bundle)

You can go simple and put just a few hexagons into a quilt.

Martingale - The New Hexagon (Print version + eBook bundle)

Or you can make a lot of blocks and make them into a larger quilt.  Notice in the following quilt the secondary design element created with the 6-pointed stars between the hexagons.

Martingale - The New Hexagon (Print version + eBook bundle)

Many thanks to Martingale Press for providing this book for review.

If you think you might be interested in more information on this book, check out Martingale’s website here.

Baby Says Sew

If you are looking for simple and practical baby gifts, look no farther than in the book “Baby Says Sew” by Rebecca Danger.

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

A look at the Table of Contents will show a variety of toys, clothing, blankets and other useful items to make for babies.

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

I think my favorite project in the book is for making this baby carrier.  What a nice gift this would make for a new mom or dad…

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

I also thought this diaper bag and changing mat combo was another good idea to make for a gift.

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

You can make a cover for a changing table mat and an organizer for toys of other useful items.

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

This hooded towel would be SOOO easy and quick to make!

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

Here’s a quick and easy hat and a toy to throw together.

Martingale - Baby Says Sew

You will find more toys and other baby items in the book, which you can find here.

Fabric Play

Fabric Play written by Deanne Moore is the perfect book for a beginning quilt-maker.

Martingale - Fabric Play (Print version + eBook bundle)

In her book, Deanne gives you a mock-up drawing of the entire quilt for you to play with different fabrics in creating your own quilt.

Martingale - Fabric Play (Print version + eBook bundle)

She also gives suggestions for using different fabrics with each quilt.

Martingale - Fabric Play (Print version + eBook bundle)

Martingale - Fabric Play (Print version + eBook bundle)

Martingale - Fabric Play (Print version + eBook bundle)

Many thanks to Martingale Press and their photographer for providing the eBooks for these reviews.  You can find more information on this book here.