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Pinwheels and Sunshine

It’s been a long while since I had a finished quilt to share! For such a tiny little table top quilt, this one has a LOT of background stories to share. Here’s my “Pinwheels and Sunshine” quilt, all sewn, bound, labeled and ready to send:

Pinwheels and Sunshine

 

 

 

 

 

Did you notice the straight line quilting?  If you’ve been following my blog awhile, you know straight lines are NOT my thing.  So how did I do the lines above?  (I was hoping you’d ask. . .) A couple of weeks ago, I was looking through You Can Quilt It! by Deborah Poole.  I wasn’t paying too much attention, since the book seemed geared to longarm quilters; I was just enjoying the gorgeous quilting photographs.

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Then a sentence from the book jumped out at me, and I had a total EPIPHANY!  She was talking about how the book applies to longarm quilter, but many of the techniques are useful to domestic machine quilter too.  Then she started talking about rulers.  And ruler quilting feet.  Wait, what?!?  You can quilt with a RULER on your quilt?!?  (I’m pausing for dramatic effect here.  You can either be amazed along with me, or laugh at me.  I’m fine either way.)  Up to this point, I thought professional quilters only used rulers for marking their quilts, and I abhor marking on my quilts.   I thought longarm quilters either used pantographs or did quilts completely freehand.  But guiding a ruler alongside my freemotion foot?  I think I could do that. . .

So I googled the idea, and found Amy’s Freemotion Quilting Adventures.  She has a Janome 6600P just like me and does phenomenal quilting.  I read through her blog for a couple of hours, and came away with a shopping list.  Ruler toe foot, and rulers from Accents in Design.

I won’t say quilting with rulers is easy.  But it is intuitive, and a LOT of fun.  Here’s a close-up of my first attempt at ruler work:

close-up quilting

 

 

 

 

 

And the back, with the Accents in Design ruler shown.  That white strip is velcro, which helps the ruler hold your quilt.  And you use the pegs as grips for your fingers.  I really, really love this ruler so far.

 

ruler

 

 

 

 

 

To finish off the quilt quickly and easily, I used a label tutorial from Sassafras Lane.

label

 

 

 

 

 

Oh, and the muffins pictured up top?  Those are nutmeg muffins.  They taste almost like cake donuts, and make a lovely quick breakfast with a cup of coffee. Yum!

Today I’m linking up with Fort Worth Fabric Studio and Amy’s Free Motion Quilting Adventure.

And I’m off to wrap up some more quilting.  I currently have five quilts that need quilting, so I’m going to get a LOT more practice with these rulers in the next couple of weeks.  What are you up to this weekend?

Happy Stitching!

emily

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tea Ceremony Table Runner Revisited

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This week Stitch magazine added a bunch of patterns to their downloadable catalog.  My Tea Ceremony Table Runner was one of them, so if you missed the original issue, you can now buy the pattern individually (and on sale, too!  Yippee!!).

Seeing that design again reminded me of how many iterations an idea goes through before becoming a finished pattern.  The inspiration for this table runner came from an idea I had when I started blogging (nearly three years ago).  I wanted a banner quilt for the website, using my favorite colors, and coffee, and hexagons.  Here’s the “rough draft” original idea that eventually worked into the Stitch table runner:

Coffee table runner

(Please ignore the wobbly seams and wonky edges, I was learning quite a bit about appliqueing EPP shapes to felt.  And rule number one is:  don’t sew white fabric to black felt, lol!)

And if you’re curious, the cookies in the picture are Almond Toffee Sandies, a fab recipe I discovered this week.  They’re not too sweet, and delicious with a cup of coffee (or tea!)

Now I’m off to my local sewing machine shop to pick up a “ruler foot” for my Janome.  More on that after I’ve experimented with it– but I’m super-excited about learning an entirely new set of free-motion quilting skills!

Happy Stitching!!

emily

 

 

Baked Goodies

Since last post, I’ve made . . . .

160 hand dipped Orange Coconut Creams (not pictured)

8 dozen mini Pumpkin Chip Muffins (not pictured)

3 dozen Hot Chocolate Cupcakes (with peppermint sprinkles)

and twelve loaves of Cranberry Pecan bread

No, I didn’t get the mug rugs finished for the teachers.  I didn’t factor a sleepless teething baby into this week’s hectic plans.  However, they’re *almost* done, and going into a box so I can be ahead of the game next year.

I hope your holiday plans are progressing merrily!!