Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Zoo Babies Quilted Wall Hanging Pattern

Zoo Babies Quilted Wall Hanging Pattern
My newest quilt pattern is now available at www.craftsy.com. This darling quilt is perfect for a zoo-themed nursery or child's room, complete with nine of the most popular animals at the zoo. Meet Ellie Elephant, and Lucas the Lion, along with other favorites, including Penny Penguin and Molly Monkey, all done up in easy fusible machine applique. Although there are lots of pieces for each animal, their size is deceiving in the quilt illustration, since the blocks finish at 9" square within the sashed quilt top. Make it to use as a play mat or as a wall hanging and help baby learn all about the animals in the zoo...use the blocks to teach them animal names and colors. Colorful sashing and cornerstones make the blocks pop in a simple but easy setting. Nine animals are featured in the quilt pattern, which is available for sale as a downloadable PDF pattern at www.craftsy.com AND, a tenth, interchangeable block...Zachary Zebra, is available as a FREE download, also at Craftsy. Easy-to-trace, full-size templates are included for each animal in the patterns.
Zach the Zehra FREE PDF Download

Ellie Elephant

Jerry Giraffe

Harry Hippo

Lucas Lion

Polly Panda

Penny Penguin

Ruthie Rhino
Molly Monkey

Til next time, keep smiling and sewing,

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

At Long Last My New Pattern...The Bold and Beautiful Quilted Tote Bag

From March 2015 until now May 2016), I have been in a long process of personal transition and change. My art and sewing projects were set aside for more than a year while I moved twice and finally resettled in Longmont, Colorado. I'm home again in Colorado, after all my moves across the US for my career, and it's lovely to be near my family and participate in family activities whenever I can.

Today, I'm happy to introduce my first new pattern in over a year. The Bold and Beautiful Quilted Tote Bag has finally made its debut at www.craftsy.com, where I sell my tote, accessory, and quilting patterns online as PDF downloads.

Just as I went through major transitions, this pattern did too. It started out as an entirely different shape, but when I couldn't seem to get my first idea to work last summer, I put the pieces aside for another day. After I settled in my new apartment in February and my sewing room was "open for business," I found the time to rethink the design. The second design didn't work either, so out came the seam ripper. The third time was a charm, as they say!
I'm really pleased with the final design and hope you will enjoy making your own version. The tote is made of fabric I quilted myself. That's become one of my trademarks, since I can't seem to find double-layer pre-quilted fabric that I like. And, because you can choose two fabrics you love instead of settling for what's available, the resulting tote bag is truly one-of-kind, expressing your personality and your personal color palette.The bag pieces are cut first, then quilted and trimmed, making it easy to quilt them before assembling the bag..

The tote has contrasting front and back shaped panels that hold the contrasting pockets in place. The panel and the upper edges of the pockets have a bound-edge finish. The wider binding at the upper edge of the finished bag also holds a zip-top panel in place inside the tote. The panel unzips so you can drop it down into the bag when you want to use it with an open top.

The roomy tote will stand up when you place it on a flat surface, but when you unload it, it lies flat due to the hidden tuck that creates a non-traditional boxed bottom, which you can see in the photo below. I love this feature for easy storage and also because it is easy to pack into a suitcase on my travels...to tote home treasures!

There are also two divided pockets on the inside for stashing small items, including your cell phone.
The straps appear to have bound edges, but the faux binding is created by a really simple flat sewing method. For a truly polished finish the side and bottom seams are bound inside the finished tote.

I hope you'll find two fabrics you love to make this tote your own. You can purchase and download the pattern at www.craftsy.com

Until next time, keep sewing and smiling,

Monday, August 10, 2015

Sew Let's Sew...A Quilted Wall Hanging

Dress Up Your Sewing Room!

Finished Size: 31" x 57", excluding hanging tabs

Celebrate your passion for sewing and quilting with this colorful quilted wall hanging.
It fills a blank wall in any sewing room beautifully. The sewing machine takes center stage and is joined by large appliqued spools and a tomato pincushion with strawberry emery, plus a rotary cutter and scissors. The blocks are all tied together with red sashing and multiple borders. The appliques are large and the pieced blocks are simple, making this a great project for a confident beginner. Full-size templates are included for all appliques.

Purchase this pattern as a PDF download at:

Until next time, keep sewing and smiling!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Chain of Hearts Baby Quilt

Chains of Love

A new baby is always a celebration of love in our family. My newest Grand-Niece, Ella Rose, arrived in October 2014 so I've spent a few weeks creating a new quilt for her and a pattern for you to create quilts for the new babies in your life! Here's Chain of Hearts, the newest "baby" in my pattern store.

I did the basic design a few years ago in my Electric Quilt software but never used it, so I checked there first for possible candidates It's nice as a lap quilt for cuddling and rocking, or you can also use it as a wall hanging in baby's room---just add a hanging sleeve. 

Two different 12" blocks alternate across the surface of this sugary sweet quilt, creating chains of love for little Ella. I used pink polka dots on white for the background print that the hearts float across, but a pastel tone-on-tone print or one with a small motif would work, too. If the baby is boy, use a medium blue for the large hearts and scraps from your stash to make a lively blue-and-white version, instead. Substitute red for the pieces of the large heart and use blue scraps on white to turn this into a Fourth of July wall hanging.

You'll make two different heart blocks (Heart and Heart Chain), which were carefully designed and colored to create the chains and float on the background. The piecing directions are arranged so that you can chain-piece the required units wherever possible. The 12-page pattern includes colorful step-by-step illustrations, so you can't go wrong. And, you make the blocks in two sets to keep things organized.

Make more blocks and you can increase this design to any size you want.

Any intermediate quilter will find this an easy quilt to make and a confident beginner who has perfected the 1/4" seam could make it too. Accuracy is the key when blocks have lots of seams!

Like all of my quilt and tote bag patterns, you'll find this quilt in my pattern store at www.craftsy.com


Until next time
Keep sewing and smiling,  And Happy Holidays, 2014!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Quick Gifts for Christmas

Aprons Make the Perfect Gift

There's still time to make special gifts for Christmas giving. Here are a few from my pattern store at www.craftsy.com to check out.

Looking for a quick-and-easy apron for kids? Check out my Little Helper's Apron. It requires minimal yardage and time. Choose just the right fabric for each child on your list to make them extra special. The choices are endless at you favorite quilt shop. I suggest you preshrink your fabrics before sewing, as these aprons will get lots of use by little cooks and crafters.

 If you have machine that embroiders, choose lighter fabrics and  add a favorite design to the bib portion of the apron.

Here are two more apron patterns from my Craftsy store to make for yourself or for gifts this holiday season. A Holiday Apron for Mrs. Santa Claus is an adult-size, one-size fits most pattern. It's all dressed up with fancy buttons and a pretty belt buckle...perfect for those days when the hostess must be in the kitchen.

If you love to embroider, my gingham Jingle Trees Apron with tickle your fancy. My grandmother made these in the 1950s for church bazaar fundraisers and I inherited one from my Mom. Simple cross stitching on gingham was popular then. 

Make one for yourself and for other hostess on your gift list. If you don't have time to stitch right now, you'll love having this pattern on hand to start your stitching for gift giving next Christmas!
You can use it to teach a child to embroider too.

Tiny red ribbons and jingle bells adorn the top of each tree and rickrack is stitched in place below the tree trunks.

 Mug Rugs...Fun and Quick to Sew for Gifts

Have fun stitching up your favorite mug rug from my Santa and His Helpers Mug Rug pattern. They require small amounts of fabric, and you might have just what you need in your scrap basket or fabric stash. Make in sets of 3 like those shown or make a set of your single favorite design. Mug rugs don't take much time to make and are wonderful gifts. Or, you can turn them into mini wall hangings or large ornaments by adding a ribbon to the upper edge.

 And here's a fun set to make for your favorite Yoga teacher...The Yin and the Yang of It! Applique two pieces to each one, quilt and bind, and you'll have a set finished in no time!

 Or, for someone you love, choose Owl Always Love You or Here's My Heart Valentine Mug Rug. These make great gifts for Christmas or for Valentine's Day.

So, time's a wasting. Choose your favorites from this array of simple projects and enjoy the process as you make special gifts for the ones you love!
Until next time,
Keep on sewing and smiling!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Sewing Again...Two New Patterns

I've been really engaged in on-line art classes all year, but I returned to my machine in October to stitch up two new bag patterns. Both of them are available in my pattern store at Craftsy.com as downloadable PDFs...and one of them is even FREE!

Here's my new "Put a Bow On It Quilted Bag," designed specifically for quilted double-faced fabrics. Since those are sometimes difficult to find in prints and colors you love, I've also included directions in this pattern for quilting your own fabrics to make a truly one-of-a-kind bag.

I love the heart-shaped opening edge with a a magnetic snap closure, as well as the sturdy bottom, made so with bias-bound edges and an inside bottom support that you can remove and clean separately or when you need to launder your bag.

The outside pocket on the back is large enough for most cell phones...or for anything else you might want to tuck in it. On the underside of that part of the bag, there's a large divided pocket. When you stitch the outside pocket in place, it automatically divides the inside pocket.

All of the edges are finished inside and out. The binding on the bow is actually lining, cut extra large so it will wrap to the right side to create self-binding that isn't as bulky as double-layer binding used on other edges in the bag. That way, it's easier to draw up the gathering at the center of the bow--less bulky!

 Here's the link that will take you right to the pattern purchase page for Put a Bow on It Quilted Bag: http://www.craftsy.com/pattern/quilting/accessory/put-a-bow-on-it-quilted-bag/119550

Now for the FREE Pattern...The Quilted Jeans Tote

To make this fun tote, salvage an old and worn pair of your jeans (adult size with lots of usable leg below worn knee area). Or, purchase an inexpensive pair at your favorite thrift shop. 
Hanging pocket inside finished tote

Use the existing pockets for the exterior pocket and for a hanging pocket on the inside--for your phone and other small essentials.

This tote is the perfect size if you prefer a small purse or it makes a great book bag to carry your favorite book or e-reader. It's also a nice size for a bag for your tween or teen. 

I rummaged through my husband's discarded jeans to find a pair with good legs below the knees to make my bag. You could also use a new pair of jeans that you find on sale at one of your favorite discount clothing stores. Look for ones that don't have any Lycra content...the bag doesn't need to stretch

This pattern is FREE for downloading as a PDF at the following link: http://www.craftsy.com/pattern/quilting/accessory/the-quilted-jeans-tote/117080

I hope you'll check out both patterns, along with all the other tote, accessory, and quilt patterns that are available in my Craftsy pattern store.

Until next time, keep sewing and smiling!

Friday, August 22, 2014

How to Make a Quilt

My latest book, How to Make a Quilt is now in print! What a treat to find a box of 12 copies in my mail when I arrived home from our three-week vacation in the San Juan Islands in Puget Sound!

Published by Storey Publishing, How to Make a Quilt is one of several books in their Storey Basics series. This 5 x 7" paperback book is 120 pages of step-by-step directions that will help a beginner learn to quilt, as well as serve as a helpful reminder for those who have made quilts but want helpful reminders. 

What's Inside

The book includes simple-to-follow illustrations and easy-to-follow directions for each of the basic steps, including pattern and color selection, block assembly, quilt-top assembly, simple quilting, and finishing steps. It's handy to keep by your sewing machine or tuck into your tote to take to quilting class. This is my third book for Storey, and as always, the experience working with them has been a stellar one.

The book includes directions for Log Cabin piecing with suggestions for a few Log Cabin projects. The chapter on learning how to make patchwork blocks includes directions for making 12 different sampler blocks using different techniques. You'll also find directions for turning the blocks into a small wall hanging (or table topper). You will use these techniques over and over when making other quilts and quilted projects.

At a price of only $9.95, this little book makes a great gift for crafty friend. I hope you will check it out at www.storey.com and enjoy using it or giving it as a gift. Until next time, 
Keep on Sewing and Smiling,

PS If you are looking for a special tote pattern to make for carrying supplies to sewing or quilting classes, be sure to visit my pattern store at http://www.craftsy.com/user/153303/pattern-store
Check out The Quilted Carryall--my best-selling tote pattern--for a roomy 8-pocket bag!