Category Archives: Quilting and Sewing

Fireworks Quilt {finished!}

My Fireworks quilt is finished, and it’s been fun to fall in love all over again with the beautiful Bloomsbury fabrics as I bound it.  The vivid colors and lovely florals make me anxious for spring.

I made this quilt top more than three years ago (yikes!) and last year had it quilted by Nicole Christoffersen (@kwilter100 on Instagram).  She did a wonderful job.

It’s kind of fun to go back and finish something you’ve set aside for a long time.  I’ve learned so much since I pieced this, and grown a lot as a quilter, yet this quilt still makes me smile.  I remember what a stretch it was to purchase the fabric, as I was unfamiliar with Liberty of London, and then I grew to really like them as I sewed with them.  Now I have a small collection of Liberty lawn and can’t believe I wasn’t sure I’d like these cotton prints!  I have saved every scrap.

The pattern is from Thimbleblossoms, available on her website.  I chose Jennifer Paganelli prints for the backing and binding and they look beautiful together.  My hope was to track down some Bloomsbury yardage to use because I rarely buy backing fabric when collections first release, but my search was unsuccessful.  Most of the time what I put on the back of my quilts is something I bought on clearance for $5/yard or less, and this quilt ended up being no exception.  I have come to enjoy the process of looking through what I have and trying several different prints until one satisfies me.  It’s fun to mix and match.

As always, I’m grateful for another finish.  It sure feels good.

In other news, we have a birthday to celebrate today!  My youngest son is now eleven years old and I’m off to bake his cake.  Have a great day!


Applique Mini Quilt

Practice makes prepared.

Before I started working my way through my small collection of Carolyn Friedlander quilt patterns, I needed to know that I could actually handle them.  Would my catenary arches actually look good?  And would the botanics quilt leave me in tears?

I discovered some of Carolyn’s classes on Creativebug, and started watching.  This applique block is one of hers and it was a great way to test my skills and patience without committing fabric, time, or emotion for a huge project.

This block has everything: concave and convex curves, gentle and tight lines, sharp points, continuous circles.  I knew that if I could execute it decently and enjoy both the process and outcome, I could dive in on the other patterns.

It worked!  I enjoyed it, I learned, I love how it looks.  It sold me on all the others.

Recently I quilted the block with a 1″ grid and bound it.  It’s a funky but fun block and will be a bright addition to my mini quilt wall.

Also, I really like this brick wall.  It’s so cool.

This block started me on the Aerial grove quilt, Botanics quilt, and more recently the Catenary quilt.  If you’re considering one of Carolyn’s patterns and find yourself nervous about the applique, I highly recommend watching her Creativebug classes, particularly this applique block.  Because I now have some quilt tops to finish, I’m excited to watch her class on machine and hand quilting techniques.

(Creativebug offers a free trial, which I signed up for, and then decided to join for $5/month.  My kids love watching the craft videos as well)

It’s nice to finish something.  I had a funny conversation recently with the father of my son’s friend.  We were both sitting at the district science fair where we would wait for 6 hours or so, and I was working on my Catenary applique.  He asked what I was doing and I told him I quilt.  His response surprised me.  He said, “quilting is hard work.”  I said to him, “Yes, and unlike most of the hard work I do as a mother, quilts stay done.”  He stared at me for a minute, threw back his head, and laughed.  True story.

Seriously, though, I cleaned my kitchen 7 or 8 times today.  My children helped, but as I type this post it’s past ten p.m. and my 16 year old son is hungry again, cooking something on the stove.  I’m fine with it.  But it’s so great that quilts stay done.


Catenary Quilt Progress

Slowly but surely my Catenary quilt top is taking shape.  I started this applique project about a month ago and have worked on it steadily in quiet moments.  I now have ten of the fourteen applique strips complete.

Until now I have cut and basted only one row at a time, but with only four left I couldn’t resist getting them all ready to stitch.  I’m so close!

The lovely blues in the Summer House fabric range (by Lily Asbury for Moda, years ago) have been cheerful company and a feast for the eyes as I work.

I decided to assemble the quilt top as I finished each section, to keep them in order and to see how the overall composition looks as I go.  It also means that I only have six more seams on my sewing machine and the entire quilt top will be finished.  I like that!

Fingers crossed for a finish in the next week!  I have another applique project to start….


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