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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Easter Bunny Table Runner

A Cute Table Runner From Remnants

Made With Die Cuts 


My Easter table runner

Sizzix Big Shot Pro, pads and bunny die

I bought this Sizzix die cutter and bunny die at a quilt show and had an idea for Easter.

I made bunnies!
 Two fabrics, one for milk chocolate Easter bunnies and one for dark chocolate.


Tasty bites out of those bunnies

I free form cut some bites out of the bunnies, because I just cannot resist a chocolate bunny.

Table runner strips sewn together

I collected Easter fabric remnants for a few years and came up with this arrangement of strips. I arranged the strips so that you will get the same view from either end of the table.

Raw Edge Applique

I used a heat bond fusible webbing to attach each of the bunnies and then a simple zigzag edge for raw edge applique.

Two table runners on the longarm

I actually made two table runners. One to keep and one to gift. I put them on the longarm with one large backing and one large batting and then trimmed around them to separate them when I was done quilting. It worked great with them together instead of messing with a skinny piece on the longarm.

Quilted bunny tail

I decided to quilt a small swirl of a bunny tail on the bunnies.

Something is really lacking here

At this point I am really not happy with the bunny tails.


Backing fabric
You can use either side of the table runner with this cute egg backing. 

Big fuzzy tail!

This looks much better.
 I shared my table runner with some people and several suggested a big fluffy fuzzy tail would look better than the quilted one. I am so glad I asked for opinions. Sometimes I just can't see what is needed. The quilted tail shows on the back of the fabric.

All done!
I am so happy with how my table runner turned out. It really adds some color and the bites out of the bunnies were a real hit.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Christmas Gift Quilts

I am happy to share with you the quilts I gifted to family at Christmas.

It was really hard not to share photos as I sewed away and completed them. We had a lot of family visit at Christmas and really enjoyed seeing everyone. I think everyone loved the little tv blanket quilts I made them. They are all a throw sized quilt with a fleece back and no batting. Light weight but warm enough to cover up while watching tv in the evening.

The tops were made from fabric I have collected (with the exception of one quilt top) and I used my Accuquilt to cut the pieces. I only used 3 dies between all 10 quilts and cutting went really fast using the dies. I didn't follow any pattern except for figuring out the layout on the pinwheel in the center of the green quilt.

For the backing I decided to buy fleece and I caught a great sale of 50% off which really made me happy. I decided to self bind the quilts with the fleece backing. I love how the fleece backing frames the quilt with this self binding technique. Fleece does a lot of fuzz buildup in the bobbin area both during quilting and binding, so I did a lot of cleaning.

The fabric is busy so most of the quilting stitches blends in on them quite a bit. I did a couple of pantographs quilts, but most of them were just free motion meander on my Handi Quilter Avante. I used Omni thread on the top and bottom line in the bobbin.

There are lots of photos in this post, and I hope you take a look at them all. I tried to match the fabrics for the person receiving them and to me that is part of the fun. I love the process of planning and creating the quilt top and see it come to life. You will see I love color and printed patterns.

Quilting In Process
This bright quilt comes to life on the longarm.

Girly Quilt
Girl quilt with fun prints

Cute cupcake print.
This fleece backing with cupcakes was perfect for the quilt.

vertical strip quilt for boy
Lots of fun boy fabric prints

boy quilt with truck backing
I love the construction truck fleece I found for this quilt.

walking the dog quilt
A quilt for a dog lover and tennis shoes for walking the dogs.

full view of the paw prints and tennis shoes quilt
I love how this quilt looks completed, so bright and yet dark at the same time.

Paw prints on front and back of quilt.
This fleece matches the front perfectly and looks great bound around the edges.

gray and white quilt
Modern and a bit of an eye chart, but I think it works.

mandala fleece backing on modern gray and white quilt.
The fleece is modern and thick and all the gray tones of this quilt work great together.

a quilt for a man that loves the outdoors
An outdoor themed quilt.

Outdoor themed fabric with blue fleece plaid back
I could have gone with a green or tan fleece but blue fits the outdoor theme of sky and water.

boy quilt with superheros and space
A boy quilt with baseballs, Starwars and Batman.

quilt with starwars, batman and baseballs
Perfect for this boy quilt, baseballs on fleece.

Blue and gray fabric with tiny triangle arrowhead print.
Quilt corner folded back to show the printed front and blue mottled fleece back.

blue quilt for a man
I cut some chevron print fabric in strips to make this arrow border that goes around the quilt.
Setting the tumbler shapes on their sides with a kind of positive negative print pattern makes
this feel modern and different than any other tumbler quilt I have made.

Boy quilt with animals, monsters, soccer balls, trains and cars
Such a fun quilt to make with all the bright pieces.
The bright orange inner border breaks up the zillion little print pieces.

boy quilt front and back
Cute dog fleece print goes great with the top.

Soft and pretty purple quilt.
Fun faux fur minky fabric made this the softest quilt of the bunch.

Triangle quilt in purple and white.
I love purple and lavender.

Quilt top and back.
Pretty fleece backing like feathers or palms and I was very lucky to find a
fleece with colors that matches the fabric on the front. There were not many greens
available in fleece.

Pin wheel quilt in green and white.
The pinwheel in the center doesn't show up as well in the photo as in person.

Completed quilts.
A fun pile of the completed quilts.

I hope you enjoyed looking at my quilts, I really enjoyed making them. 

Monday, December 4, 2017

Quilted Christmas Stockings

My Christmas Stockings

Made For Family Traditions

My earliest childhood memories of Christmas include every one in our family having their own Christmas stocking that was made by either my mother or my aunt. When my kids were small I continued the tradition by making each one of us our own stocking. Fast forward to having grandchildren and time to make them their own stockings.

I decided to make my stockings quilted and used a classic rail fence out of strips.

Christmas Fabric Cut In Strips
Fabric Strips Ready To Sew

I sewed the strips together, cut them to blocks and then sewed blocks together to make tiny quilt tops. Here are a couple of them close up.

Candy Canes, Peppermints And Reindeer Fabrics
Pieced Fabric For Stocking

Holly, Candy Canes, Snowmen, Reindeer fabric
Close Up Of Pieced Fabric For Stocking

I used a poly batting and chose different Christmas fabric for the backing which will make the inside lining of the stocking. I stitched in the ditch for each of the seams.

Quilt Top With Batting And Back
Small Quilt Sandwiches

I traced one of the stockings I previously made many years ago, but made the top of the stocking a little wider as I felt it was too narrow on the other stockings.

Stocking Ready To Cut
Ready To Cut

This is my simple pattern traced from my other stockings and it is ready to have a stocking cut out of the quilt sandwich. I turned the pattern over to cut the matching opposite side of the stocking.

Lining And Two Stocking Halves
Two Halves Of The Stocking
Here is the stocking with both halves cut out, they are just laying on top of each other and I turned part of it back to show what the lining will be for this stocking.

Fitting A Cuff For A Christmas Stocking
Measuring To Sew On The Cuff

Once my stocking halves were sewn together, I found some white short plush to make cuffs, measured pinned and sewed in place.

I actually put each person's name on the cuffs but blurred them out on the rest of this post.

Applique On Stocking
Hand Applique

I cut out some Santa prints and pine cones and appliqued them on the stocking along with some green fabric to make a Christmas tree. 

Applique Snowmen
Applique On Stocking

Then I cut out this snowman family and appliqued them on top of this stocking, I also appliqued the pine cone and peppermint.  I did applique on both the sides of each stocking trying to space them out a bit. I later sewed on some cute buttons, beads and other shiny things to make them have a little twinkle.

Christmas Stockings Completed
Completed Family Of Christmas Stockings

Here are all 5 stockings for the family. I love how they turned out. Each of the grandkids get a Santa and mom and dad have the two stockings on the left. (the names on the cuffs are blurred out)

I have other projects going that I can't share yet, but I will after Christmas.

Merry Christmas to you all and I hope you get all you Christmas projects done in time.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Car Show Tshirt Quilt

Creating The T-Shirt Quilt

A Labor Of Love

I had a huge collection of T-Shirts that my husband got during the years he restored classic cars and showed them in car shows. He no longer wore them but did not want to get rid of them. First they took up closet space, then they were moved to a big plastic tub. I wanted to make a T-Shirt quilt for him but the thought of me cutting up his favorite shirts really didn't sound like a good idea for him. I started finding photos of other T-Shirt quilts online and got him on board.

I want to thank the owner of Valerie Custom Quilting 
for her wonderful tutorial on her website to create a quilt with what she calls a drop shadow effect. That technique really helped bring this quilt to life. 

The first step in creating a T-Shirt quilt is to pick out what shirts you want to use. One of the things we did was lay them on the floor trying to see how they might look together in a quilt.

pick out t-shirt layout
Laying Shirts Out To Figure Out A Layout

It really helps to take a photo of your layout at this point. The next step is to remove the arms and sewn necks from the shirts and also the back. You may have a logo on the back to use in the quilt also.  Before you cut the shirt to the size it will be in the quilt, you need to iron on a stabilizer to keep the fabric from stretching a lot while you are making your quilt.  I use Pellon-SF101
and you iron it on the back of each of the T-Shirts in a size larger than you expect to trim your shirt to.

The tutorial calls out cutting the shirts to 12 inch squares but these shirts are large and has huge images. I used a special ruler, June Taylor T-Shirt Transformation Ruler
and used the largest size which was the outside dimension of 15 1/2 inches. 
You can use any ruler set you you like but I love the clear acrylic to see my image and be able to center it the best I can when I cut. 
Once I had all my t-shirts cut to size with the stabilizer on the back, I realized my quilt is going to be huge and pretty heavy. I decided to sew a stay stitch around the edge of each of my t-shirt squares (about 1/8")  to keep the ironed on stabilizer from starting to pull away during the piecing process of this quilt. I am really glad I did this, because as I guessed as I got my rows together and all the tug and pull of the quilt top on my sewing machine, this step saved me a big headache.

I chose a fabric with Route 66 signs on it. Several car shows my husband went to were Route 66 events. I used a plain black for the shadows on the quilt. You could use a gray instead of black.  I have an  Accuquilt Go Fabric Cutter
and I used the 2 1/2" strip die for cutting the shadows and cornerstones on this quilt top. I used the 4 1/2" strip die for the border and again the 2 1/2" die to cut my binding strips.

stabilized t-shirt square with sashing and cornerstones
Here is one of my T-shirt squares with the shadow and corners sewn on

Once all my t-shirt squares had the shadows and corners sewn, I pressed the seams and then laid them all out on the floor again. At this point my husband decided he wanted them rearranged again. Now the next step will be to add the strips of my Route 66 fabrics and create rows and then join the rows together.

reviewing the t-shirt square layout
Reviewing and rearranging the T-Shirt squares
T-Shirt Squares joined into rows and rows joined
Now that the squares and strips are joined it is looking like a quilt top.
At this point the quilt top is coming to life and you can see the shadow effect making it appear to have the T-Shirt squares floating above the Route 66 fabric. I just love the results.
Flame Borders Added
Quilt Top Complete
I added the flame borders around the quilt top. My husband picked out these loud flames and it really does a fantastic job making this a hot looking design. There are flames on several of the shirts so it really ties together great.

Get Ready To Quilt

Time For A Quilt Sandwich

I used Warm And Natural Batting which is cotton and added to the weight of the quilt. A poly batting or bamboo makes the finished quilt not quite as heavy.

quilting around the flames and signs
Close up of quilting
I decided to follow the outlines of the flames and the signs throughout the quilt top. I used a variegated orange King Tut thread on the flames and a gray Omni thread on the signs and t-shirts.

close up quilting view
A view of typical quilting I did on the shirts

I didn't do dense quilting on the quilt. Since the shirts were large squares, I did need to do some in the shirts to meet the minimum requirement of quilting per the batting company's recommendation. I used a ball point needle which helped reducing thread breaks and shedding. I think I only broke my thread a couple times during quilting, which was fine for me. I had read many stories online on how hard it was to quilt a t-shirt quilt. I think dealing with the bulk and weight was a little hard, but not the actual quilt stitching.

free motion flame stitching
My free motion flame stitching
As a beginning longarm quilter I don't have a lot of experience on free motion quilting yet but here is my attempt at quilting flames on the shadow strips and a few on the t-shirts.

typical T-Shirt quilted
Off the frame and typical T-Shirt Quilting
I draped my quilt over the side of the frame after I was done quilting so the shadows would show the quilting stitches better. It makes it look a little bent in the image but that is the result.

a few T-Shirts in the quilt
A view of a few more of the T-Shirts
Here you can see a few more of the shirts along with the quilting.

T-Shirt quilt ready to bind
Quilting is done, off the frame, now ready to bind
Done with all the quilting and ready for the last step, the binding. I do machine stitched binding. I really don't like hand stitching.

view of the back of the quilt fabric
I found another Route 66 fabric to make my quilt backing.

A small view of the quilt backing fabric. You can see the flame quilting with the orange King Tut thread but the gray Omni thread blends in and is just showing a bit of texture on this print.

The Finished Quilt

All Done!

completed quilt
Finished T-Shirt, bound, washed and draped on a queen size bed.

I bound the quilt with the same fabric as the shadow strips and machined stitched my binding. I then washed the quilt and it softened up just beautifully.
I forgot to mention, I prewashed my fabric before cutting anything and used  two Shout Color Catchers on each load. They worked great and I had no color bleed onto the white shirts. My final wash I put two more in just to be sure. I love those things!

quilt corner and backing
The bound corner with a glimpse of the quilt backing.
 I hope you enjoyed seeing my creative process, I enjoyed sharing it here with you. 


Welcome to my blog about my sewing, quilting and digital designs. I also dabble in machine embroidery.  I am just getting this set up and ha...

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