Well.  I had hoped this project would be done by today . . . but it’s not.  I’m full of excuses if you want to hear them.  Family member with a back issue.  Farm chores.  Cranky daughter with TWO molars coming in.  Kitchen painting prep.  Son with an upcoming birthday that needs planned.  House that needs cleaned all the freaking time.  Shall I go on?  I’ll stop.

Unfortunately as this is the last link up party for the selvage along, my motivation to actually finish this is gone.  In all reality I probably won’t touch it again for awhile and the only sewing I’ll be doing in the near future is a birthday bunting and then some Christmas presents.  I kinda suggested to my family we all do handmade Christmas this year and somehow the year has completely gotten away from me.

Pesky life.

I’ll stop whining and just share pictures instead.  That’s all most of us are here for anyway!

I do have the top completely quilted!  Go me!  Unless I decide to do the little triangles at the top of the feathers.  Which I might. Someday.

I started with my selvages on the woodpile so I might as well end there, right?

Quilted Front RW

Don’t lecture me on my ironing skills.  I loathe it.  I have seen something called “Flatter” out and about in the quilty interweb so maybe I’ll give that a try next time.

Quilted Back RW

I’m pretty happy with the quilting.

Quilted Quiting Back RW

Quilted Quiting Back 2 RW

I just love quilts with the sun shining behind them.

Quilted BackLit RW

And while the sun is out, how about a lovely starburst, just for funsies?

Quilted Starburst RW

Maybe a little wind too, to go with the sun.  It really is a gorgeous day here!

Quilted Windy RW

If you want to make these feathers yourself, I have a link to the free pattern and tutorial by Blossom Heart Quilts in my very first selvage post.

That’s all I’ve got.  It’ll probably be pretty quiet around here for awhile till I get the kitchen painted and the party planned.

Linking up with Renee of Quilts of a Feather and Jess at Quilty Habit.  Thanks ladies for the push to create this and especially to Renee for all the advice!!!

- Joanna

    It’s Le Challenge time again.  I won last time (thank you, thank you very much) so of course I had to enter again!

    This time the theme was “Wilderness.”  Only one thing popped into my mind when I thought about the wilderness.


    Happy, pretty, frolicking little deer.

    Deer RW

    The funny thing about deer is that when you see them on vacation . . . they are happy, pretty, frolicking little deer.  When you move to five acres and see them everyday . . . they are annoying.  They eat your Hostas.  They eat your Day Lilies.  They eat your tomato plants.  They eat the tops off every dang thing you try to plant.  They poop in your yard.  They don’t move when you are jogging down the lane and you have to play a game of chicken over whose gonna veer off first (this actually only happened once to me, but I’m adding it to the list anyway.)  They carry ticks (we haven’t had a issue with this yet, but I’m sure the day will come.)

    Once the wilderness theme was announced I rushed right out to the LQS and picked up 3/4 yard (on clearance too, wahoo) of the above deer fabric.  I decided to make another mini quilt, this time to reconcile me with my previous love of deer.  Happy, pretty, frolicking little deer.  It only half worked since I decided to use the deer on the back of the quilt and nowhere else.

    I did use it as color inspiration for my fabric pull though and finally landed on this:

    Wilderness Full Front RW

    I’m calling it “Camp Snuggly.”  I’ll explain that more in a minute.

    Side Front RW

    These prints are all Cotton & Steel fabric.  I seem to be a one trick pony these days.  It’s just that I have a ton of it, I really like it, plus all the colors go together.  So.  Yeah.   And the lions?  I cannot get enough of the C&S lions!  Makes the perfect happy, pretty, frolicking little tent side.  At least something got to be happy, pretty and frolicking on the front of the quilt right?  Not that this lion has his “frolick face” on or anything.

    Let’s move on, shall we?

    Lion RW

    This was only my second time doing applique and I learned something.  If you plan on dense, matchstick quilting, you don’t actually need to applique.  The quilting holds it all together just fine.  So I ripped out all the applique stitches as it seemed to busy with the quilting over them.

    I love that sun.  And the clouds?  It’s one of the few purchases (and by few I of course mean a fat quarter pack, two yards and 7 half yard cuts) I’ve made from the NEW Cotton & Steel lines.  Most of my stuff is older and speaks to me more than the new lines do.  Talking fabric, now that’s WILD.

    Wilderness Clouds RW

    The trees were completely improv and my absolute favorite part of this mini quilt.  This is my second attempt as I wasn’t wild about the first try.  I’ll post a pic of it later.  My mom liked the first try okay so I’m considering a mini mini quilt for her.  Otherwise it’ll just be an orphan block.

    Inspiration for the fabric on the tree trunks came from here, a lovely mini quilt called Winter Trees by Cassandra at The Not So Dramatic Life.  If you like mini’s check her out for sure.  She’s doing an awesome year long series where she makes a new mini once a week.  Plus, she’s super good at what she does.  Way better than me.  So hop on over there (once you’re done here though, mmmm K?)

    Tree Trunks RW

     I’ve had several people tell me the trees looked like fireworks.

    Trees RW

     I love the binding too.  It’s fun.  And who doesn’t need more fun in their lives?

    Binding RW

    Doing stellar with my corners still!  If you are thinking that binding looks big . . . you’d be right.  I use three inch strips to make my binding.  I sew to the back, turn to the front, and machine sew down the edge.  I started this for several reasons.  One, I don’t hand sew anything.  It’s just not my thing.  This way the bottom thread from sewing on the binding ends up on the back, not the front. Two, it gives me plenty of room not to catch the back binding when I’m sewing down the front.  Yes, when I first started, I was that bad I did catch the binding a few times even with three inches.  I’m much better now and have considered making smaller binding tape, but I’ve decided I like the larger size.  I think it adds a hefty frame to the piece and since quilts, whether mini or not, are ART, it just makes sense.  You frame ART!  You just do.  It always looks better that way.  It does mean I often have to add borders or leave a little batting showing when I trim down in order to save points so it’s not a perfect solution.

    Binding Corner RW

    Happy deer frolicking on the back.  I totally forgot to add triangles to the corners for hanging though . . . . grrrrrr.  My new friend Renee from Quilts of a Feather (yes! I have made a few quilty friends!!)  suggested just hanging with clear tacks.  This girl is AMAZING at free motion quilting!  You should check her out too.

    Back RW

    They can frolick as much as they want, so long as it’s not through my Hostas.  Or my Day Lilies.  Or my tomato plants.

    Deer and Binding RW

    That fence?  It does not keep deer out.  Not out of my Hostas.  Or my Day Lilies.  Or my tomato plants.

    Fence RW

    I promised I would mention Camp Snuggly, didn’t I?  Camp Snuggly is the nickname my husband gave to our two person dome tent that we used before the kids.

    Camp Snuggly RW

    I realize my quilted tent isn’t a dome tent (also, there is clearly no giant lion head on the side of the real Camp Snuggly), but it was a free pattern off Craftsy so I went with it.  This post has a link to the tent pattern if you want it.  Also, Renee crafted a free dome tent pattern (after I sewed this one up, harrumph) which you can find information on here if you’d like.  Fabric is expensive enough, I’m all about the free patterns.

    Here’s another pic of Camp Snuggly from this same trip, all rolled up on the back of Rocky (that’s the motorcycle).  Also, my super hot husband.  Swoon.  Rocky has been sold and we don’t travel this way anymore since we had kids.  But I have some fond memories of these trips.


    - Joanna

    P.S.  I keep comments here closed.  Thanks for understanding.  I caved and started an Instagram account, so you can catch up with me there if you’d like.  I use it sparingly to keep up with a few quilty inspirations and post the occasional duck picture and WIP.  I probably won’t follow you back though.  Just keeping it real.  Have a great day!

    Linking up with Le Challenge, Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesday, Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social, Quilt Art Designs for Paper Piecing Party

      Month 7 in the Beginner Block of the Month series.

      BOM 7 Both RW

      I printed and cut out the patterns for Month 8.  I even cut and pinned on fabric to section 1 of each pattern piece.  And there I stopped.  The last block, Month 9 is out too and I’m debating going another way completely.  So I’m pondering.  I have a few other projects to finish up before I get any farther on this one.  I did lay out the blocks I’ve done so far and snapped a quick I-Phone pic.  I’ll try to post that this month.

      Honestly, I haven’t been sewing as much as I’d like to.  Too much other stuff needs done right now.

      I did finish my Le Challenge project for the Wilderness theme.  I posted a previous sneak peek here.  And here’s another:

      Binding RW

      - Joanna

      Linking up with Janeen at Quilt Art Designs for Paper Piecing Party

        I’ve been working on a mini art quilt for the current Le Challenge wilderness theme.  Here’s a sneak peek:

        Tent RW

        It’s a paper pieced tent pattern I found on Craftsy for free.  Here’s a link if you want to make one yourself.

        I’m on the fence about this project so far.  I love the big lion for the side of the tent but I feel like the rest of the tent is too busy.  And that dandelion yellow background fabric??

        I.  Just.   Don’t.  Know.

        Off to the right are some improv trees.  You’ll have to wait for the full reveal for those.

        - Joanna

        Linking up with Janeen at Quilt Art Designs.

          Once again, another selvage feather that doesn’t read as selvages.

          Feathers P 2 RW

          Meh.  I’m still happy.

          Ready for a bunch of repetitive pictures?

          Feathers P 1 RW

          Feathers P 4 RW

          Feathers P 5 RW

          Feathers P 6 RW

          Feathers P 7 RW

          Feathers P 3 RW

          See?  There are selvages mixed in with the Kona solid white.  More Grunge fabric for the aqua background fabric.  I swear, if Grunge came in more colors I wouldn’t even look at another Kona solid again.  I LOVE Grunge fabric.  Love.  Love.  Love.  Almost as much as Cotton & Steel.  No worries though, I’m using some C&S for the back.

          Feathers P 8 RW

          I picked up a half yard of these birds for the backing.  Perhaps I should have cut the selvage off and used it in the feather?

          Feathers P 9 RW

          Feathers P 10 RW

          Since I started writing this post several weeks ago, I’ve made one and a half more feathers in various colors for this project.  And that’s pretty much the only sewing I’ve done lately.  Only one half of a feather still to sew, then sewing the feathers together, adding a border, basting, quilting, squaring up, binding and hanging it in my son’s room.  At the rate I am sewing, that’ll take me three months.  Or more.

          Click here for more posts related to my selvage projects such as my easy improv feathers tutorial.

          Feathers C 3 RW

          - Joanna

          Places this post will probably be linked up to . . . Quilt Art Designs for Paper Piecing Party, Mollie Sparkles for Sunday Stash, Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social,  Freshly Pieced for Work in Progress Wednesday, My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday, Quilts of a Feather and Quilty Habit for Selvage Along Mid-way Check In.

            Another top I pieced together eons ago.  It was my third top I believe.  Maybe my fourth.

            Tetris on the Pine Logs Top RW

            I finished quilting it April-ish I’d say.

            Tetris on the Pine Logs RW

            To be perfectly honest, this quilt looks WAY better in the pictures than it does in person.

            Tetris on the Fence Full RW

            I made it for a friend who was due with her fourth baby!  Just the other day she passed my house running with two kids on bikes and pushing two kids in the jogging stroller.  She’s pretty much Supermom.

            Tertris on the Fence with Back RW

            It’s a tetris pattern pieced with flannel squares.  Some parts look GREAT!

            Tetris Close Up Good RW

            Other parts?  Not so great.

            Tetris Close Up Bad RW

            I made this quilt before I knew I had to nest my seams.  Before I realized how stretchy flannel is.  Before I bought a 1/4 inch piecing foot.  My mom says this foot is like training wheels on a bike and I will want to take it off eventually.  No.  You can pry it from my cold dead hands.    

            My other mistake?  I made a flannel baby quilt for a late spring baby.  Yup.  It gets hot in the Midwest.  What was I thinking???  Oh well.  90% of the use of baby quilts in the beginning is to lay on the floor for the baby to lounge on TOP of so I think it all worked out okay.

            Still.  This quilt holds a special place in my heart and I can’t exactly pin down the reason.

            Thanks for stopping by.

            - Joanna

            Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social and My Quilt Infatuation for Needle and Thread Thursday.

              BOM 6 Block 2 RW

              BOM 6 Block 2 close RW

              Click here for all posts related to this project.

              - Joanna

              Linking up with Janeen at Quilt Art Designs.  She’s having a two year celebration (CONGRATS) so hop on over there and leave her a comment if you’d like a chance to win a free pattern.

                10. August 2015 · Comments Off · Categories: Quilting, Selvage Along, Sewing · Tags:

                I’ve made two feather blocks so far for the Selvage Along.  I’m saving my Carolyn Friedlander Botanics selvages from my paper pieced BOM project for a third feather block, the AMH feather that Renee of Quilts of a Feather posted a tutorial for.  In all likelihood this third feather will not be done (or even started) by the time the selvage along concludes in September.  I need to realize my limitations and I just don’t have the time for too many projects right now.  But I have printed the template and I have enough selvages for at least three feathers so I plan for it someday to be a mini quilt for my sewing room (aka the guestroom).  I believe this is exactly what Renee is doing as well so stop over to her blog next month to see the finished project.

                The first feather block I created is for my daughter.

                Feathers C 1 RW

                I used short selvages from a plus sign toddler bed quilt I started last year.  It was one of my earlier projects and the fabric isn’t designer or anything, but the colors are so pretty together.  The selvages don’t really read as selvages from a distance, but all the fabric was purchased as a fat quarter pack and that’s the selvage end I was given.

                If you look really closely you can tell.

                Feathers C 2 RW

                But far away?  It just looks like a feather.

                Feathers C 3 RW

                This was pretty easy and if you want to make your own, here’s how I did it.  I don’t have in process photos (sorry I’m not sorry but I was too busy simply ENJOYING the process) but you are all smart so you can figure it out without visual aids.

                I first started with a paper template to make sure my plan would work.  Special thanks to my kids for allowing me to borrow their crayons.

                My plan is based on fairly short selvages sewn into rows.

                Cut a V shape.

                Feathers C 4 RW

                Remove the center section and what do you get?  A feather!

                Feathers C 5 RW

                Then I sewed it up with scrap fabrics to see what it looked like.

                Feathers C 6 RW

                Hmmmmmm.  Yeah, that wasn’t quite right.  Looks more tree-like.  Feathers really need that angled top to read as feathers.  Not to worry, that’s an easy fix!

                STEP 1: Sew your selvages together in rows.  (Oh hey, I found a picture of this! Go me.)  I used a small seam allowance since my selvages weren’t very tall.  About an eighth of an inch.  Add an extra big piece of your background fabric to the bottom edge.

                Selvage Fabric RW

                STEP 2: Cut an even V shape, measuring exactly the same distance from each side.  Unless you want wonky feathers.  Which, hey, you might.  Wonk is popular in the quilting world.

                STEP 3:  Sew an inch wide strip to the left side of your right feather half.  Sew that to the right side of the left feather half.  It’s really not confusing even though it sounds like it.

                STEP 4:  Trim the top and bottom so they are straight across and parallel to one another.

                STEP 5:  Fold your feather in half with the stem you created running down the middle and trim an angle into the top.

                STEP 5:  Open up your feather and sew a square of your background fabric to each angle you just made.

                STEP 6: Trim the squares you just added to be level across the top and to match the angle of the feather sides.

                STEP 7: Sew triangular shaped background pieces to each side (you’re going for a square-ish block here) and trim at the top and bottom to create even parallel lines again.  

                STEP 8:  Add a long background piece to the top and bottom.  I haven’t gotten to the bottom yet.

                STEP 9:  Square up your new feather block!  Clearly I haven’t done step 9 yet.  Do as I say, not as I do.

                I didn’t measure anything and this project was completely improvisational.  Which is probably why I enjoyed it so much!  The white background pieces all came from my scrap bin, although I do have yardage to complete the project in the future.  It’s just a simple Kona white I stocked up on at JoAnn’s with a coupon.

                This is as far as I plan on going for now.  I have yet to back, quilt and bind the plus sign toddler bed quilt I originally made from this fabric (I cannot decide on a backing fabric for the freaking life of me) and I’m not doing anything with this block until I tackle that project.  Maybe the block will go into a pieced backing.  Maybe it’ll be a pillowcase.  Maybe a decorative pillow.  Maybe a stuffed animal.  Maybe a wall hanging.  I just don’t know yet.

                As for my second feather I made?  Here’s a sneak peek:

                Feathers P 1 RW

                I’m hoping to create one or two more and quilt as a mini art quilt for my son’s room.  In a perfect world I’d have that done as a reveal for the last link up for the Selvage along, but these days, it’s far from a perfect world.

                Have a great day all!

                - Joanna

                P.S.  If you are new here, thanks for visiting!  I currently keeps comments closed (here’s why) but I might turn them back on someday.  I have no idea when.  In the meantime, I am happy you are here!

                P.P.S.  Linking up with Renee at Quilts of a Feather and Jessica at Quilty Habit as well as Night Quilter for Tips and Tutorials Tuesday.  Oh and Blossom Heart Quilts for Sew Cute Tuesdays.  And while we are at it, Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social.

                  I’m going to stop with the words on these beginner paper pieced BOM posts.  It’s all pretty self explanatory by now.

                  BOM 6 Block 1 RW

                  BOM 6 Block 1 close RW

                  - Joanna

                  P.S.  Those long skinny pieces at the top?  Royal.  Pain.  In.  The.  You.  Know.  What.

                  Linking up with Quilt Art Designs

                    26. July 2015 · Comments Off · Categories: Sunday Stash · Tags: , ,

                    Remember my Le Challenge entry?

                    Direction 1 RW

                    Yes, well, I WON!!

                    Granted it was by random draw and not merit, but still.  It was a win and I couldn’t be happier.

                    I won a $25 gift card to The Fat Quarter shop and here’s what I spent my virtual dough on:

                    Fat Quarter RW

                    A fat quarter pack of one of the new Cotton & Steel lines, Honeymoon in Teal.

                    Fat Quarter 2 RW

                    Yes.  Yes I did drag this pack along on one of our walks for a photo shoot.

                    Fat Quarter 3 RW

                    Our neighbors down the lane have horses and I was hoping they would be out, since this line has a fabric with super cute horses.

                    Honeymoon in Teal R

                    I’m feeling like a bit of a one trick pony these days.  I pretty much only buy Cotton & Steel it seems.  My three and a half year old son even asked me “Is this Cotton & Steel fabric, mom?”  Must.  Branch.  Out.  I don’t love quite a few fabrics in their new lines so it won’t be too hard.  Like Picnic?  Yikes, no.  No no no.  I’m waiting till August when my LQS gets the new lines in to make a final determination before I buy any more C&S.  Fabric is so different in person than online.  And believe it or not I do have a few non C&S fabrics still to showcase!

                    See ya laters.

                    - Joanna

                    Linking up with Mollie Sparkles for Sunday Stash.

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