November 1, 2012 Sophie had a great night handing out candy to the kids and was impressed with some of the costumes that she saw. Now it's time to put away the Halloween decorations, bring out Thanksgiving decorations and continue learning how to sew quilts. Halloween has come and gone, but I just want to show you the Halloween quilt that I finished before I store it away. I learned to make part of it during my lessons on how to sew quilts and also a technique I learned as a little girl while watching my Auntie Ellen do hand embroidery on dish towels. At night when I'm watching TV and even during my lunch hour, I like to do hand embroidery or any kind of hand work. When my hands are busy sewing, they are not busy putting snacks in my mouth. I won't guarantee that you will lose a lot of weight, but some of your projects might get completed. This pattern is from CrabApple Hill and is named "Hocuspocusville". The pattern was very easy to follow, even for a person like me who is still on the beginner side of learning how to sew quilts. The center is just nine patches that are set on point. Around the outside of the nine patches are designs of old "spooky houses" which are stores such as "Witches Stitches Quilting and Needlework". There are 12 of these blocks that are hand embroidered using mostly the basic backstitch or stem stitch. Each design is transferred using a .01 brown Pigma pen and stitched using #310 DMC black embroidery floss. I did change mine up a little by using orange on the pumpkins and some of the signs so they show up more. Also I used a fine point Sharpie permanent pen to fill in some of the designs such as the black bats. (click on photos - to enlarge) Even though I am still probably considered a "Newbie" on how to sew quilts, I am going outside my comfort zone and trying new techniques. If you don't mind me bragging..."I think it turned out pretty darn cute"! Find the Hocuspocusville pattern On Sale at QuiltAddict.com in the patterns category. Would you be willing to try something like this? We welcome your comments, which can be created by using the "Leave a Reply" box below. A new feature is the ability for you to attach photos to your comments. To attach a photo: 1.) At bottom of "Leave a Reply" box, click on "Browse" or "Choose File". 2.) Find your photo in your computer's photo or document files. 3.) Double click on your photo file to attach it to your comment. 4.) The file name will be in the "Browse" or "Choose File" window, although photo is not visible in Comment yet. 5.) Click "Submit Comment" to attach photo and complete Comment. Visit us at QuiltAddict.com to see why Quilting
July 30, 2012 Sophie has just participated in her first "Block Swap" with the Lake Gogebic Community Quilters. Since learning how to sew quilts, new opportunities have opened up for her to experience. What a great day Wednesday was, spending the day with a great group of fellow quilters, recieving eleven beautiful quilt blocks and of course, we can't forget the delicious pot luck food. The bad thing about pot lucks are that you want to try all the dishes...and by the looks of the scale the next morning, I think I tried everything! It's hard to believe that it's Thursday already and I don't want to go back home in a few days. I love waking up to the cry of the loons and the quacking of the family of ducks floating by the cabin. Can a person ever get tired of a cup of coffee out on the dock, still in their p.j.'s, and enjoying the sun rising with sounds of the lake? Some people may get bored with it... but not this girl. As I was sitting on the dock and planning my day, my "Bucket List" popped into my head. I had made a committment to start marking things off and I have, such as learning how to sew quilts. I have enjoyed every minute of learning how to sew quilts along with making many new friendships. Since the start of quilting has been a success, it's time to move on to another item on the "Bucket List" which is to build or buy a cabin. I have a couple days left, so the plan is to call a realtor and check out what is available on Lake Gogebic. Have you experienced anything special since learning how to sew quilts?(see "Leave a Reply" below) Visit us at QuiltAddict.com to see why Quilting is..."A Great Habit"!
July 10, 2014
The dictionary’s definition of passion is “a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept”. Well, I guess that describes me! I have a sewing room that I could live in 24/7 IF I had a bathroom (with a shower, of course), a microwave (mainly for popcorn), and a dorm-size refrigerator to accommodate fruit, cold drinks, and maybe some cheese. I have found my passion along with A Great Habit. I believe Sophie is on her way to finding her passion too, through quilting.
As a person getting into beginner quilting, and not really knowing what I was doing, the first quilt I ever made was from my polyester maternity tops which I had sewn myself. In my opinion, it was a waste of money to purchase those articles of clothing that would be worn for only a few months. Once our family was complete, with a boy and girl, I decided that no one on earth would want my hand-me-down maternity tops, so what better way to use them than to chop, chop, chop away and make a quilt. That very warm quilt is still like new today – it will probably never wear out!Beginner Quilting Lessons found in books. (click image to purchase) There were no Quilters in my family, and there were no beginner quilting classes that I was aware of, nor were there great websites to go to for guidance and help, such as www.QuiltAddict.com Those of you who are “less-mature”, have to realize that home computers were not available and the term “website” didn’t even exist. Imagine that! (Oops – that does place me in a certain age category, doesn’t it?) I have come a long way in the area of quilting – from beginner quilting (not really knowing what I was doing and having to learn on my own) to becoming a quilting instructor. One never knows what lies ahead. My advice to you is to take advantage of all the opportunities that come your way with beginner quilting classes, and have fun with them! Visit us at QuiltAddict.com to see why quilting is........A Great Habit!
June 4, 2012 Sophie has recently joined a "Block Swap" project and is searching the internet for free quilt patterns that she has heard about. I could not keep my eyes open any longer last night as I was looking for free quilt patterns on various quilting websites. Hopefully tonight, with fresher eyes I will be able to find a block to use. Where did all this cold rainy weather come from? I thought summer was here. I'm kind of glad that the weather is lousy, so I don't feel guilty staying in to get some work done. The project that needs some time now is the quilt blocks for class, I still have three more of the Jacob's Ladder blocks to make. Since I have learned how to chain piece, it shouldn't be a problem getting the three blocks finished...maybe even tonight! I have probably told you before how nice it is to walk into my quilt room and have my sewing machine, ironing board and cutting table out and ready to be used. The pieces to the Jacob's Ladder blocks are still laying where I last left them...I love just shutting the door to hide the mess. With the tunes playing, and the rain hitting the windows I start chain piecing my sets together. I am getting faster at sewing, but I still have to watch my quarter inch seams. Fortunately. being able to keep my un-sewing (ripping) to a minimum, my three Jacob's Ladder blocks were done in an hour. I am even starting to impress myself....this is fun! Since there are still a few hours left till bed, I am going to jump on-line to find the free quilt patterns. I did find a great site at www.FreeQuiltPatterns.info that had many blocks to chose from.... not all of them were the size I needed. After some more searching I finally found the one I was going to use. With my pattern in place, I must go to the quilt shop to find some fabric...LOVE IT!!!!! Where have you found free quilt patterns? What website is best for free quilt patterns? (see "Leave a Reply" below) Visit us at QuiltAddict.com to see why Quilting is..."A Great Habit"!
May 29, 2013
Have you ever worked on a project only to find that your block did not come out to the size required? We have ALL been there – whether we are Newbies just learning how to sew quilts, like Sophie, or Experienced Quilters. There is nothing more frustrating than to get those blocks completed only to find that they do not match in size. Here are a few tips that will hopefully help you to obtain and maintain a quarter inch seam. Do you cut accurately? It is advised that you use the same rotary cutting mat and ruler throughout your entire project – they have different width lines so you need to be consistent using these quilter supplies. [youtube]http://youtu.be/qvmX8hBbgug[/youtube]What can you use for a quarter inch seam guide? Three suggested methods are: a quarter inch foot that is available for your particular sewing machine; many layers of tape which would provide a ridge as a guide; and a particular marking on your throat plate that gives you a quarter inch measure. Be consistent with whatever method you use. Does your machine needle move? Sometimes our machine needle will get a tiny bit out of alignment, or we intentionally move it for another project - be consistent with the alignment of your needle. Are you Shy, Precise, or Generous? In learning how to sew quilts, we are sometimes told to sew a “shy” quarter inch seam. Other times we are told to sew a “generous” quarter inch seam - be consistent – that is the key to our sewing. It sometimes helps to sew a needle-width less than a quarter inch to come up with a precise quarter inch seam. When learning how to sew quilts, it is suggested that you make one block and measure it for accuracy before sewing the remaining blocks. Do you use the same type of thread throughout your entire project? I have found that when I foundation piece, I like Aurifil thread because it is much thinner and eliminates some bulk when pressing the seam to one side. This light weight thread would also help in eliminating thread bulk when machine piecing your blocks. Whatever weight thread you use, be consistent. Check out the video library at www.QuiltAddict.com. Marti Michell has a good tip for maintaining that quarter inch seam, which also helps you in creating a secondary quilt top. Have you noticed that one word has been used quite often? It is the word “consistent”. Always be consistent in whatever steps you are taking throughout your project. That should help you to obtain and maintain a quarter inch seam.
May 18, 2014 Let’s get one thing settled before going further. Quilters use the term “squaring-up”, which refers to the four corners of your quilt blocks and quilt tops being trimmed to a 90-degree angle, by using a square ruler. It does not always mean that your finished blocks or quilt tops are an actual “square”. If you are a Newbie Quilter, you will hopefully learn in your initial quilt lessons how to “square-up” your blocks as well as your finished quilt tops. Your Quilting Instructor should make this an important part of your beginner quilting experience. Check on Sophie’s progress with her quilt lessons to make sure she has learned this technique. Some Experienced Quilters do not take the time to do this one little step and often find themselves in trouble - their wall hangings may look “topsy-turvy” or their larger quilts do not have the same outside border width. Being “square” is important to all quilters! Do you have your quilts professionally quilted? If so, please help your Professional Quilter in saving him/her time and yourself money by making sure your individual blocks are all squared-up as well as your quilt top. Also, make sure you have additional fabric for your backing - a minimum of 6” extra, both vertically and horizontally (3” minimum per side). The two videos presented in this Posting will hopefully help to visually guide you in squaring-up your blocks as you create them. And, hopefully you will be able to see how easy it is to square-up your large quilts once they are completed. Squaring Up Your Blocks [youtube]http://youtu.be/YuqauFfA5xk[/youtube] Squaring Up Your Quilt [youtube]http://youtu.be/DeYAOkl55NY[/youtube] I use my large 20 ½” Square Ruler for squaring up all my larger projects. If you make larger quilts, consider investing in this quilting ruler, or add it to your wish gift list.