• Free Pattern,  Tutorials

    Free Motion Quilting Troubleshooting Checklist

    I have been trying to get back into teaching quilting in my area – and I have been really enjoying it! I taught my first Free Motion Quilting class as few weeks ago, and have another one tomorrow morning. The last class we had a lot of issues with getting our sewing machines to cooperate. It was a mix of inexperience quilting with the all important need to get that perfect balance set up on the sewing machine. This handout addresses both sides of the issue. To help (hopefully) with folks getting started off on the right foot (it is soooo frustrating to want to be able to sew and…

  • Free Pattern,  Quilts,  Tutorials

    Hand Quilting Workshop

    I recently did a demo on hand quilting for the Cincinnati Modern Quilt Guild. I covered both perle cotton hand quilting – aka big stitch quilting – as well as traditional hand quilting – since really, there isn’t much difference in the technique, just the size of the thread, needles, and knots.  Here is the hand out I made for the talk – it’s based on the longer class I have taught a few times. Of course, to really understand hand quilting, you need to see it done! I want to make an illustrated version of the hand out above, but hopefully it can be helpful to others – at…

  • Applique,  Free Pattern,  Quilts

    Fox Applique Quilt – Free Applique Pattern

    About two years ago, I made a fall snowball quilt, and had a bunch of HST’s leftover after trimming my blocks. So I pieced them into an awkward shaped block of chevrons. It then seemed impossible to me how to finish the quilt. Then last week I was sorting through some Works in Progress (sooo manyyyy) and in a flash decided I would add a strip of white and an applique patchwork fox. I had a free moment so got started immediately. And Done! I have traced the applique with basic instructions for anyone that may want to make their own Fox Patchwork Applique here is the pdf . It is a VERY…

  • Free Pattern,  Pieced,  Process Pledge,  Quilts,  scrap,  Tutorials

    How to Make A Really Scrappy Lone Star Quilt

    Traditional Lone Star Overview The Lone Star is a traditional diamond shaped block – traditionally you do planned colors so it makes a cool radiating star pattern. For an example of that, here is a cool tutorial! It requires really careful piecing, because if all your bias cut seams don’t match up just right, you lose some of the effect. The strips are all the same length and width and you have to carefully calculate your strip piecing and color placement to get the perfect effect. Another option is the slightly scrappy lone star, which Better Off Thread has a nice tutorial  with examples for that effect! While her version uses…

  • Free Pattern,  Pieced,  Quilts,  scrap,  Tutorials

    Charley Harper Bird Pixel Quilt – Plus Tutorial

    I’ve long been obsessed with making Charley Harper quilts for years now – I love his artwork! However, I can’t seem to make my self finish one of them! Here is a an early process shot of my goldfinch quilt and here is the finished top from last fall. Miraculously, I made the back and basted that yesterday, so hopefully photos soon of that coming along! May be a few years before I can decide how to quilt it – but I’m thinking orange peels? I also started a cardinal version last fall at the #OHCraft Retreat that the amazing Kara puts together every year – maybe I’ll finish it at this…

  • embroidery,  Free Pattern

    Disgruntled Christmas Embroidery

    I love the holidays and family, but am not crazy about commercialism, and while I could frame it politically or from a feminist perspective, if I’m really being honest, I don’t like, basically, doing housework which I think the holidays involve way more housework and running errands than I am willing to buy into. But I like my family! And jokes, I like jokes and movies with jokes in them. So, some years ago I made these Christmas ornaments and sold them in the shop. They have some naughty swears in them, friends, so warning! For a few years, I sold the completed ornaments in my shop, but I fell…

  • Free Pattern,  Other Stuff I Made,  Tutorials

    Square Tote Bag Free Tutorial

    I love making reusable shopping bags and totes and decided to whip up a little pattern for one of my favorite bags that I have – here is the tutorial at this link. I did a pdf because I find it so much more convenient for me to make documents than blogposts -sorry for any inconvenience to you! Essentially this bag is just a half yard of fabric folded in half.  You can also use two fat quarters sewn together. The fabric here is an upholstery weight cotton from ikea – but quilting weight is great too! Instead of just sewing up one side and along the bottom like a basic…

  • Free Pattern,  Process Pledge,  Product Placement/Reviews,  Quilts,  Tutorials

    How I Machine Sew Binding

    I won’t bore you with a bunch of stuff about binding from start to finish. There a lot of great places to learn about binding, like from Jaybird Quilts or from Sew Happy Geek. I just have one thing to sort of add to the conversation. I machine sew my binding on. Some people hand-sew it, and I’m sure that’s great, but eh, not for me. Generally, people say that when you machine sew your binding, you should sew it onto the back of the quilt, and then fold it over to the front. Here’s where I’ll toss out my opinion: Instead, I sew my binding onto the front of my…

  • Free Pattern,  Quilts,  Tutorials,  wedding

    Valentine Hearts Mini-Quilt Tutorial

    Update – thanks to folks over at Sew Mama Sew! for selecting this tutorial as a finalist! See the other awesome projects here! When I was considering ideas for my wedding signature quilt (follow the link for that tutorial), I had thought about doing applique hearts, and having people sign the hearts. I decided that the hearts where a little bit too sweet for sarcastic old me, and also that I didn’t want to cut out 100+ hearts. And (Oh the humanity!!) since I STILL haven’t won an Accuquilt system to cut out my hearts for me, alack and alas,  I went with squares.  However, my sketches of hearts quilts were…