Monday, September 9, 2019

My Favorite Block

Hello & welcome to the My Favorite Block Blog Hop, the brainchild of fun-lovin' Carla at Creatin' in the Sticks .  Thank you sew much, Carla, for hosting this great hop!

Today is my day to share with you my favorite block.  It wasn't an easy choice, but in the end I chose the Churn Dash Block.  This is a 9-patch block so named because when pieced it resembles the antique paddles used to churn butter.  I've never churned butter, so I can't attest to that, but it does make an attractive quilting block.

Mostly I love the versatility of the Churn Dash Block.  There are all sorts of tutorials and patterns on how you can use it to make different styles of quilts.  My favorite way to use this block is as a "frame."  It is the perfect way to showcase a bit of embroidery, fancy quilting or, in my case, pictures of grandkids for my Christmas table setting.

Since Christmas is just around the corner, I decided to make use of this project to get ready for the holidays.   As Christmas is mostly for the kids in the family, I thought it would be cute to have their sweet faces on a table runner.

To do this I printed pictures of all five of my grandkids on June Tailor Sew-In Colorfast Fabric Sheets for Ink Jet Printers. (The trick to getting great-looking prints is to make sure you set your computer print settings to high.)   I was able to get 2 photos on 1 sheet of fabric, and cut each photo to a 4 1/2" square.  The overall size of one  block measures 12 1/2" (includes seam allowance).   I sewed the 5 blocks together and did some quick "in-the-ditch" quilting.  The completed size for table runner, complete with binding, measures approximately 13" x 61".

I'm sure my little munchkins will be delighted that they are the main feature this Christmas.  I think this little table runner looks quite festive!

Thanks for stopping by.  It's always so nice when you visit.  I hope you've enjoyed seeing my latest creation.  Now go see what everyone else has made with their favorite block.

Tuesday, September 10th

Just Because Quilts (you are here)

And don't forget to visit Carla at Creatin' in the Sticks and enter her fantastic giveaway!!

Monday, July 15, 2019

The 100-Day Project

I have taken a hiatus from quilting and have been drawing lately.  My latest endeavor was drawing a picture a day for The 100-Day Project.  Although most of the people who participate in this journey are artists of some sort (quilters, writers, painters, scrapbookers, etc.), it is not a requirement to do something artsy.  Basically this project challenges participants to DO SOMETHING each day for 100 days.  It could something as simple as brushing your teeth for 100 days, or as complicated as making an elaborate meal.  You just post a picture on Instagram (or Facebook, if you prefer).  That's all there is to it.  There is no reward or prize for completing each day's task, just the satisfaction of knowing that you have committed a few minutes each day to this project.

I like to draw, so I chose to draw occupations.  I picked odd jobs, like chimney sweep, alligator wrestler, the grim reaper, as well as some mundane jobs, like secretary, HVAC man, doctor, etc.  Of course my twisted humor sometimes took over, but that just made it more fun.

Of course I had to include a quilter!

The project started in April and ended in July.  If this sounds like something you think you might want to do, check out their website at  I found it to be great fun and met a lot of nice people through the process. 

Saturday, June 1, 2019

California Central Coast Quilt Shop Hop

Can't delay!
To the Quilt Shop Hop
I'm on my way!

It just doesn't get any better this -- traveling with your best friend to California's coast for a quilt shop hop -- 12 hours of bliss!

Although it wasn't hot here at home quite yet (predicted to be 101 degrees by next week), it was at least 20 degrees cooler and foggy along the coastline.  This did not damper our spirits in any way!  On our list were 6 shops on the hop and 1 more that wasn't.  There were 4 more shops on the hop but they were further down the coast than we cared to travel.  Afterall, we only had the 1 day and there are only so many hours in the day!

First on our list was The Quiltery in Paso Robles where we picked up our "premium passports," for which we paid $7.50 earlier in the month.  Included was an adorable commemorative tote bag and included a collectible enamel pin from each shop we visited.  There were free passports available, too, and every visitor received an embroidered badge from each shop with their unique design.

Second on our list of shops was Birch.  They were not part of the hop, but this a great shop which has a wonderful selection of Charley Harper fabric.  If you can't make it to their shop in Paso Robles, check out their website at

We made our way on down the coast, giving a quick wave to the pier at Pismo, and visited 5 other shops:  Old Towne Quilt Shop, Picking Daisies, Sew Fun, The Cotton Ball, and Quilter's Cupboard.  In each shop we were overloaded with inspiration and awed by beautiful fabric and patterns.  All of the shopkeepers were friendly and helpful, and the quilters we met along the way were having as much fun as we were.

Sadly all things must come to an end.  Our bags full of goodies and purchases, we headed home, with plenty of ideas for sewing projects to fill the long, hot summer days ahead . . .  or almost anyway.    

Hey, Rhea!  When is the next hop? 

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Art Lessons

This time last year I was up to knees in fabric and thread.  I joined all sorts of Quilt_Alongs, including a Christmas in July theme.  This year I am up to my eyeballs in drawing  and painting classes.

From Lindsay Ostrom, Creator of Cuteness, who is primarily a lettering artist, I enrolled in her art class where she teaches her painting process, as well as lots of other cute stuff.  The class is called Bloom in Color - The 5 Step Linzi Coloring Method plus Projects!  This is a go-at-your-own-pace class offered for $40.  Included are print-outs, videos, and one-on-one help if needed.  If you are interested, you can find her class on Etsy at ThePaperRabbit Bloom in Color

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I am taking 2 classes from Danielle Donaldson, The Character Building Guild (What's Your Sign) and Art Troop No. 5, Series 2.

Both of these classes have videos to follow, as well as instruction sheets to print out, and worksheets on which to practice. These classes are primarily watercolor techniques with a few surprises thrown in. If you would like to try your hand at watercolors, click here to go to her site and choose a class that interests you.

From the 100-Day-Project, I found Angela Kennedy who owns pennystamper. She is a wonderful artist and offers several courses on mixed media art. I chose the 2 classes pictured below. Visit her shop by clicking here Angela also provides videos on how she creates her beautiful art at reasonable proces. This class is a little more challenging and may not be for the beginning artist.

Kara Bullock is offering a FREE art tutorial to all her subscribers. There is a wide range of classes from which to choose. I was most interested in trying my hand at charcoal. I haven't drawn in charcoal since high school. Again, this may not be for the novice, but who knows? You might be a budding Picasso, and this class is FREE!

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Do You Use a Cricut?

I admit I have 2 Cricuts and LOTS of cartridges, but I seldom use them.  Being mostly a quilter and painter, I don't have a lot of need for a die-cut machine.  However, this week my neighbor announced she wanted to have a block-long yard sale. 

Perfect!  Time to break out the Cricut and make a couple of signs.

I quickly made these signs out of old scrap paper and used the Don Juan lettering cartridge (an oldie but goodie).  The letters are set to 5" and pasted to a 14"x22" poster board.  The first board is folded in half.  To make the letters stand out just a little better, I outlined them with a black Sharpie and added "stitches" to the inside border.  Cute, if I do say so myself.

Not knowing which way to point the arrow, I added brads to the back so the arrows could spin either way.  On the smaller sign, I folded it in half and put the arrows on either side.  The direction you don't use can be turned inward and hidden behind the fold.

The yard sale is slated to start at 8 a.m., but you can bet there were be early birds here by 6a.m.!  Got to get busy!!

Thursday, March 28, 2019

New Baby

A new great niece is about to arrive . . . just in time for Easter!  What better quilt to make for an Easter baby than bunnies playing peek-a-boo?

This is from my old Quilt Du Jour design Peek-A-Boo Bunny.  It's a small 36" square with appliqued bunnies, just perfect for a little girl.  I love the backing fabric! 

I also like to add an afghan as a gift for baby made out of Bernat Pipsqueak yarn.  I make about a 36" Granny square to throw on the floor for baby to lay on.  (It really is too warm to wrap baby in unless it's the middle of winter.)  I can get one of these little blankets done in a lazy weekend.  Pipqueak yarn is so soft and cuddly and washes like a dream.  Baby will have this little afghan for many years to come.

Along with the quilt and afghan, I made a few burp cloths from flannel and added a Baby Book for the little one.  (Is that a dying tradition?  I don't see many baby books for sale.)

Welcome, Little One!

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Pick a Pumpkin Blog Hop

Pumpkin Spice & Everything Nice!

Welcome to the 
Pick a Pumpkin Blog Hop 
hosted by Carla at 

Today is my day to share with you what I have created for this fun hop.  Carla wanted us to do something with pumpkins, so I made a happy little table runner based on the Pumpkin Seeds quilt by The Pattern Basket. 

This is about as simple as it gets. I used 2 1/2" scrappy squares to make my pumpkins.  The hardest part is picking your color combinations. I made my table runner even easier by changing pattern slightly.  I made the stem a 2 1/2" square and only made one leaf.

Because it's not a Halloween quilt, I chose to use colors more suited to my decor.  I love the pastel hues, don't you?  With this pattern you can choose to put the star anywhere you like -- high, low, middle, or not at all.  I staggered mine for a little variety.  The overall size of this table runner is approximately 15" x 39". 

Image result for pumpkin seeds quilt pattern

I hope you have enjoyed seeing my project.  If you would like to make your own Pumpkin Seeds quilt you can find the pattern at the Fat Quarter Shop or

Thank you, Carla, for hosting this wonderful blog hop.  I love everything pumpkin and enjoyed making this tribute to them.

But wait!  
There are more pumpkins coming your way!  
Go visit these talented bloggers and see what they have in store in you.