Monthly Archives: May 2011

Some RWB blocks

Published / by Mary / 10 Comments on Some RWB blocks

In honor of the Memorial Day holiday, I put away the 9 patch blocks and started a set of blocks for a RWB HeartStrings quilt that will eventually go to a veteran or wounded soldier.

I’m approaching a BIG birthday in a couple days — I was feeling a little down but with a Spa day planned and my son Chris coming in for a visit to help me celebrate – I’m not feeling too bad now and I’m looking forward to Thursday.

Keith and I also went on another bike ride today – it was hotter and very windy but we did 14.3 miles and we got a lot of exercise! My hope in the next 2-3 months is to increase my exercise level and drop a few pounds — they seem to creep up on me.

It’s raining now BUT

Published / by Mary / 3 Comments on It’s raining now BUT

It was beautiful earlier and we got the bikes out and rode to the lakes. About 11 miles roundtrip (with a little assistance from my electric bike). They’ve opened up the trail all the way to the river so it’s much easier for us to pick it up now that we don’t have to ride through downtown.

Now I’m going to head upstairs and do a little piecing before cooking dinner.

May’s UFO Finished

Published / by Mary / 12 Comments on May’s UFO Finished

One thing I like about this challenge is that it keeps me from setting my quilts aside to finish something for someone else. Last year I had a goal of finishing 12 UFO’s but fell short because I put off my quilts.

Tonight I finished the binding on this HeartStrings quilt of mine which is my UFO for this month.

As I had it laying on the floor to trim – I couldn’t resist snapping another photo of the quilting. I love all the texture.

Disaster Relief – quilt giveaway

Published / by Mary / 64 Comments on Disaster Relief – quilt giveaway

My last giveaway was successful in helping to raise funds for the disaster in Japan so with all the recent tornadoes and disasters here in the US, I thought rather than trying to send quilts into a disaster area, I would hold another quilt giveaway in exchange for donations to the Red Cross.

I just made my personal donation to the Red Cross Disaster fund so if you’d also like to help those affected by the recent tornadoes and floods AND have a chance to win this quilt click on this link to the Red Cross and make a donation of $10 or more and come back here and leave a comment with your confirmation number.

For donations of $25 or more, please leave a second comment for another chance to win.

You will have until June 23rd to make your donation and leave a comment and I will draw a name and post the winner on June 24th.

The quilt is approximately 72 x 90 inches. The first photo is of the top and the second photo is after quilting.



Time to quilt

Published / by Mary / 4 Comments on Time to quilt

Can you believe it’s been 6 weeks since I’ve quilted anything??

After brunch and a fabric shopping trip with a couple friends today, I pulled out my UFO for May. Luckily, it’s one of my HeartStrings tops so some quick easy quilting was all it needed.

If I hadn’t had problems with thread breakage it would have been even nicer but after some troubleshooting and a couple needle changes, my machine settled down and I was able to finish without further problems.

I quilted a swirly version of Dwirling from the Pajama Quilter DVD.

Can you see the Heart in this photo? This was one of our LOGO quilts but I used jewel tones – you can see the heart better in the full photo of the top here.

I’ve got a week to get it bound now.

Pat’s Shadow Star quilt

Published / by Mary / 16 Comments on Pat’s Shadow Star quilt

Most of my quilts are designed with the intention that they will end up as donations or occasionally gifts so I tend to design them in the sofa to twin size range.
Remember my Shadow Star?


I haven’t yet made mine or written the instructions but Pat took the block and border from my design and created this large 84 x 100 inch version for her sister. I think it’s gorgeous!


My Design Process – part seven

Published / by Mary / 7 Comments on My Design Process – part seven

Once my top is done – it’s time to think about the quilting. While I like pantographs and frequently use them, I usually audition quilting designs if I’m going to be doing freemotion quilting.

One of the very first quilts I shared on my website was my Quick Strippie – designed to be quick to piece so that I could practice my quilting on it when I first got my longarm. I’ve never liked loading muslin to practice and while I tried a few panels — these quilts were perfect for practicing both allover freehand designs and border and sashing designs. Once you’d quilted something in each of the strips – you had it down.

Prior to getting my iPad, I would repeatedly draw designs out on paper until I embedded them in my brain. Now I use the app Adobe Ideas and draw my designs either on a “whiteboard” or directly on my quilts. I can erase and redraw as many times as I want and save the designs I like.

Drawing on a photo of my quilt itself gives me an idea of how different options might look.

Auditioning designs for Caleb’s quilt last year – see how great these Strippie quilts are for practicing a number of designs?

Here’s a HeartStrings quilt that I auditioned different freemotion designs from the Pajama Quilter DVD’s

And finally, I was looking for a alternate block motif for the basket quilt my Mom pieced for me and after looking at Kim’s Just Leaf It book and drawing different variations – I came up with the perfect one for this quilt.

Even if you don’t have an iPad, you can practice drawing designs on paper or a whiteboard because if I can draw it, I can quilt it!

This was my drawing practice for a Chinese Coins quilt and I loved how the quilt turned out.