Dresden Doodles

I’ve been waiting to get this quilt back to Charlotte before posting anything about it, but I decided to go ahead and share this now.  I’ve been gone this last week to Machine Quilting Exposition, where I took classes from some amazing quilt teachers, so I am slow to get back in gear and into my regular routine.

Charlotte has this beautiful quilt with Dresden Plates and wanted traditional quilting all over.


Here’s a close-up so you can get a better look at the fabric.  I think it’s very pretty.


I took plenty of shots of the quilting, but, truly, the best shots are of the quilt laying across my machine’s frame, with the natural sunlight coming in.  So, here are 2 of those.


Charlotte wanted feathers in the outside border and as filler around the Dresden Plates (in the white areas in the background and border), so those were fun to do.  I filled the petals of the Dresden Plate with swirls and the inside circles with feathers and a swirl.  I think the formal cable and square design in the sashing borders works perfectly with the checkerboard corners and striped sashing.  I found it funny how the feathers and swirls were quick to finish, but the sashing took as long to finish as the rest of the quilt – I used rulers for the cable and square quilting, but did the feathers and swirls freehand.  I was trying to get it perfect, but, really, there’s no such thing as perfect.

What do you think?  Does the quilting design compliment the quilt itself?

Marianne’s 30s Repro

That’s the thing I like about Marianne… that she is trying all sorts of techniques and styles.  She’s not boxing herself into one particular style of quilts and is trying whatever she can to expand her repertoire.  She reminds me of me.  I like all sorts of quilts and no one style in particular sticks with me… well… other than whimsical quilts, that is.

So, here is Marianne’s latest.  It was a Block of the Month (BOM) quilt, full of 1930s reproduction fabrics.


Marianne wanted feathers all over her quilt, and not your run-of-the-mill feather wreaths.  The quilt hanging at the store had feathers quilted similar to this, and that’s what she wanted.  I didn’t quilt it exactly like what they had at the store, but it’s close.  It looks kind of like a pin-wheel, doesn’t it?


The picture of the quilting she wanted looked like flowers, so I did that in the colored blocks and in the borders.


It’s that center circle that makes it looks like a flower.  So, this is where I snuck in smiley faces, but I needed to put them some place where you wouldn’t find them unless you were looking hard.  Look closely at the next picture.  The smiley face is in the middle of the “flower.”  You can barely see it in this one, and that’s the idea… for the quilting to be personal for the quilt-maker, but not over-powering the quilt blocks and the quilt itself.


Here’s a shot of the corner.


I haven’t been asked to quilt feathers on many quilts, so this was fun to quilt.  This next quilt I’m quilting has lots of feathers on it, too.  Hope you enjoyed this fun quilt!

There’s no place like home in Kansas

Remember this quilt?


Well, Claudia made another quilt like this one for her other brother and asked me to quilt it similar to this one.  I changed it up a bit by moving the barn to the other side of the quilt and adding sunflowers on this next quilt.  You probably won’t see much difference but here’s the latest…

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Here’s a shot of the left side of the farm with sunflowers.


And, the fence, sheep, tractors and gravel road…


And, the barn on the right side with a fat, lazy cat down in front of it…

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Some cows near the barn with a dime for perspective on how “big” they are…


Thought you might like to have a better look at the wheat…  The kernels are drawn like baby leaves.


And, for those of you are wondering how to do this yourself, here’s a video showing you how to “thread draw” wheat on my YouTube Channel.


Nap and Nod

Nap and Nod – 12 Adorable Baby Quilts by Myra Harder

Martingale - Nap and Nod (Print version + eBook bundle)

Myra teaches you how to do plush applique, curved seams, and monogrammed lettering in her book, Nap and Nod.  Although you will find hexagons and seemingly complicated patterns in her book, they really are simple and easy to make.  The one below would make a great baby gift; you can put either the length and weight of the baby or you can incorporate the birth date.


Martingale - Nap and Nod (Print version + eBook bundle)

I like how she uses monogramming in her quilts.  It gives them a more personalized touch, in my opinion.

Martingale - Nap and Nod (Print version + eBook bundle)

For all you modern quilt lovers, this next one will “allow” you to play with your quilting to make it unique.  I love how she uses the chevrons for water around the cute duck.

Martingale - Nap and Nod (Print version + eBook bundle)

For more on this book, go to Martingale’s website here.   Many thanks to Martingale and their photographer, Brent Kane for providing the book and the photos!


Sew a Modern Home

Sew a Modern Home – Quilts and More for Every Room by Melissa Lunden

Martingale - Sew a Modern Home (Print version + eBook bundle)

Melissa does a good job of including a wide variety of items you can make for your home or as gifts.  Not only are there patterns for quilts, but also placemats, napkins, a table runner, plushie toys for kids, and a crib set to include fitted crib sheets… and more!

I think my favorite quilt in this book is this next one.  I like the clean, straight lines.  They look a bit curved to me, but I think that is just the quilting, which gives it movement.

Martingale - Sew a Modern Home (Print version + eBook bundle)

In this crib set, you will get directions for how to make the baby quilt, the bumper bad, and the fitted sheet.  Cool, huh!  Plus, see that turquoise penguin under the quilt?  She gives directions for how to make it as well.

Martingale - Sew a Modern Home (Print version + eBook bundle)

You can’t see it in the picture below, but Melissa has directions on how to make the napkins with a pocket to hold the eating utensils.  The napkin’s have a triangle (flying geese) on them to match the placemats and table runner.

Martingale - Sew a Modern Home (Print version + eBook bundle)

If you would like to see more about this book you can go to Martingale’s website here.



Remarkable Rectangles

Remarkable Rectangles – Deceptively Simple Strip-Pieced Quilts by Robert DeCarli is a book you will want to have in your quilting library.   This book gives you the look of a woven coverlet in quilt tops.  The trick is in how you set up sets of fabric strips.  You will marvel at the variety of designs in the 15 quilt patterns in this book, all made with strips of rectangles and squares.

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

What I found interesting were the quilts that had an ethnic look to them such as this one, which looks like it could be Native American.  Coincidentally, its name is “Indian Beadwork.”

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

Or, this one, which looks Asian to me, called “Chinese Screen.”

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

And, then there’s “Kathy’s Star,” probably my favorite (I have a star fetish, didn’t you know?).

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

“Robin’s Butterfly” really does look like a butterfly, doesn’t it?  And, it’s an interesting design, I think.

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

All of the patterns come with clearly written, specific instructions and color diagrams for cutting and piecing together.

Martingale - Remarkable Rectangles (Print version + eBook bundle)

Many thanks to Martingale and their photographer, Brent Kane, for providing the book and the pictures you see above.  You can find more about this book at Martingale’s website here.


Hawkeye is from Iowa?

Remember Hawkeye from the TV show M.A.S.H.?  Wasn’t he from Iowa?  You know the little guy who liked Nehi soda?

*Editor’s Note: A couple of hours after I published this, I realized it was Radar who was from Iowa and who also liked Nehi.  Hawkeye was the character played by Alan Alda (his eyes kind of do look like hawk eyes, don’t they?).  I must have been channeling your thoughts when I realized I was wrong, so I apologize.  This is a good example of why we should question what we read.

Little did I know when I watched that show that the University of Iowa’s mascot is (a) Hawkeye.  My friend, Elaine, made this T-shirt quilt for her son.  Isn’t it cool?

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You know what is even more cool?  This!


I can see you now with that confused look on your face.  Well, this is the backing fabric.  It is obvious which way is up on the quilt top, but on the back, one could easily overlook the direction of the mascots’ faces and just throw the quilt backing on the frame without another thought until… you’ve completed the quilting and took the quilt off the frame.  By that point, the quilting and the damage is done.  You either live with it or pick out all the stitching.  So, I can’t tell you how grateful I was to Elaine for putting this tape on the top side of the backing fabric.  I wanted to hug her for doing this!  But, she lives a couple of states away, so I didn’t.  But, if you are reading this, Elaine, THANK YOU!!!

All Elaine asked for on this quilt was simple meandering all over and curvy, back-and-forth lines in the sashings.  I was surprised how relaxing the mindless meandering was to quilt; nothing to worry about with making sure it was going to work.  Because it did!  It matches the backing fabric and goes very well with the fabrics on the top.


I asked her to tell me a bit about her son, so I could make this more personal for him, and she said he likes sports, specifically basketball and football.  I quilted a basketball in the quilt in the picture above and a football in the picture below, but they are really hard to see.


So, since that gray T-shirt seemed to “need” something besides meandering quilted there, I decided to put a basketball and a football in that block.  When I took the quilt off the frame, that basketball didn’t look right.  Then I looked at a picture of a basketball and realized it needed a line down the middle, otherwise it looks like a baseball.  So, back on the frame it went and down the middle that line was stitched.

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No matter how simple or how difficult a quilt is to quilt, I love them all.  And, I have to admit, I had a lot of fun quilting this T-shirt quilt.  Elaine does such a nice job of piecing; that makes my job a lot easier!