Star Upon Thars

Remember the Sneeches by Dr. Suess?  They had stars upon thars, meaning some sneeches had a star upon their belly, and some didn’t.  The two groups constantly wanted to follow the trends and be like everyone else which created worry and envy with no winners, only losers.  A prime example of human behavior.  A valuable lesson for youth and adults alike.

The rhyme of the book is catchy.  Are you a sneech that likes to surround yourself with other like sneeches?  Or are you more like the have not sneeches who lust after the star, only to get the star at a high price, and then it not be the fad anymore, having buyer regret of the star?


Here are some stars I have been working on.  The yellow one is not going to make the cut for this quilt.  I would like to pose a question to my fellow quilters.  Do you like the affect of the first image with the microscopic HSTs or do you like the squares next to one another with no sashing/HSTs?

I have created a poll.  Please vote for your favorite layout.  Even better, leave a comment in the comment section with a detail you would like to share!

All votes are confidential and you can only vote once.  Your opinions matter as I want the blogging experience to be helpful to my viewers.  This link is open for one week and will then close.  I will post those results when they come in.

If you are interested in how to make this block, I have a free tutorial.  The cutting uses the parallelogram die in the accuquilt cutting system.  Click here to see the construction of the blocks.

I must say, I am still reveling in the fact that so many of you want to learn how to tat.  I am in the process of contacting my local library.  This is a quiet craft, and to assist with the heat of the summer, a trip to the library with a few that want to learn to tat sounds like a good way to stay cool.  For those of you interested, keep checking back and I will announce if the library is interested in helping me promote this on monday evenings for 45 minutes between 5 and 7.  It will be limited to only two tatters as having as many as I did this past weekend is not helpful for the teacher or the student.  Keep checking back on my blog.  Or you can comment and ask me to shoot you an email.

On the tatting aspect of things I have come across a great pictoral free online E book that you can learn better hand posture on how to hold your shuttle for the different movements.  To access this tatting booklet click this link.  It also shows the different thread sizes on the same pattern to give an idea of size and how that can affect the same stitch.  It explains each stitch/manuever in great detail.

And pinterest isa great resource for video how to’s as well as great instructional sites all free.

I am off to bathe the babes.  A mother’s job is never done!  Happy mid-week, and thank you for reading my blog!






The Quilt Hop

Today has been a whirlwind from 3:30 AM until just now, first time I have really got to sit down for an extended period of time.  Juggling laundry, sewing, quilt hoping, demonstration, and workshop.  Whew!  A success I do believe, I made it HAHA.

Here are a just a sampling of quilts at the armory.  I wish I had more time as I would have loved to share them all with my readers.

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For those of you who attended the tatting workshop, thank you for being such a crowd!  I love that there are still those who want to know.  I will have to plan something else because trying to teach 10 tatters at a time is hard.  I will say this, everyone did a marvelous job.

Now onto the tatting specifics, for those of you who have been tatting for a bit, go to the local library and see if they have any books.  They are probably full of patterns.  Most shuttles with the hook on the end that are plastic will have a pattern on the back so you can make earrings.

Here are some links for those interested in taking your tatting to a further level or if you just want to refine what you learned today.  In about two weeks if you just sit and tat while the tv is on, my guess is you will have more fluidity and it will become more graceful.

Frivole on Youtube click this link.  She is so graceful!

The person who taught me to tat Gina Butler, her gift just keeps on giving, click here to see her youtube channel.

And lastly wonderfully talented Georgia Seitz on youtube.  She will teach every maneuver you need to know.

I currently do not have any tatting videos as I think I will leave that to the pros.  But please check out my youtube channel for some free motion quilting ideas that you can use on either the longarm or the regular sewing machine.  My Quilt Projects is my channel name, click this link.

I had a large crowd at the free motion quilting demonstration, thank you everyone!  People were very eager to absorb as much information as they could, lots of questions.  Probably still more questions.  I know one person in particular is wanting oodles of information about how to select the right quilting machine before she makes the purchase.  I will have to do a follow up post on my pros and cons of differences of sit down and stand up quilting machines as well as throat space and size (all opinion based on what is right for me).  This will continue in another post.  If you have questions now, leave your question in the comments sections I certainly will answer it.

I do not want the art of tatting to die nor quilting.  Quilting is a big insurgent right now and I am less worried about that.  But most who have tatted have passed on.  This was something done 50+ years ago by old people LOL.

The vendors at the hop….they got into my pockets!  I ended up with a few fat quarters and jelly roll, and a crocheted dish towel that is already hanging on the cabinet under the sink.  I needed the dishtowel as mine is becoming a rag.  Did I need to add to my stash?  I plead the 5th!

The jelly roll however has not made it to the stash, it is already raced up into a top.  I did this while doing some laundry.  Thank you Rose for making this happen.  It turned out beautiful!  Rose probably still has these for sale for only $20.  Can you say bargain?


I am writing this post, dotting my eyes and crossing my t’s,  and then heading into the kitchen to make some tacos.  That sounds so good right now as I am running on empty!  Interested in my recipe?  Visit my other blog, or click here.

After the baths tonight for the children, I cannot wait to sink into the couch and become comatose!

Thank you everyone for a successful quilt hop!  There are some beautiful quilts in this county, I am sad to see them go.

And thanks for reading my blog!


Snuck out!

Today I snuck out of work early to feast my eyes on quilts all over town for the quilt hop.  There were some true beauties.  I am disappointed how the quilts were displayed as most were not hung to show all of their beauty.  Kinda let the wind out of my sails as I was anticipating getting good pictures of flat camera viewing the whole quilt.  Nonesuch will happen as a result as to how they were hung.  *sigh*  Quilt respect for all please!

So tomorrow I will enjoy my demo and workshop and put one foot in front of the other and enjoy the sounds and hugs from those I do not know and those I do.

Very little stitching happened this week.  I have almost got binding complete on the vest.  I have the armholes to go.  For it being dated fabric, I am liking how it is turning out!


And I finally replaced my old omnigrid ruler 6 X 24.  I have had this ruler since about 1998.  During the last two mystery quilts of Bonnie Hunters shown below (both of which are at the Quilt hop now), I kept running into problems with cutting.  Nothing I was doing wrong, but when I used my simple folded corners ruler, it kept telling me I was NOT cutting a straight line.

For those of you who have an oldish ruler in your arsenal, please stand it up on its narrow edge.  If it no longer rests all the way across the flat surface, you have slowly chiseled your ruler’s cutting edge to have a bow which flubs up the cutting no matter how careful.

I repurposed my omnigrid though.  I cut it down and drilled a hole in it and now the side I never used to cut with is my seam guide that I can easily install on most of my machines.  YAY! TIMES 2!  And it looks like my featherweight is in need of a good wax job.


While at the hop I also took advantage of some fat quarters for a buck!  Thank you Rose!


Now that this has all been planned and only one day left till it is all over, I am certain I will be back at my machine stitching more of these, which is my current project.


I am also certain I will have a story to tell about someone I met or some new gizmo to pass on to you.

In the meantime, have a great weekend!  Wholly Cow August is almost here!  And thank you for reading my blog!

Bumper Crop Of Cotton!

It is upon us, the quilt hop is next weekend in my home town.    This year I will be displaying a bumper crop of cotton made into quilts.


Quilty Junk In My Trunk!

I have also volunteered to do a Free Motion Quilting demo, as well as a tatting workshop. Bring yourself to the Armory, stay cool, sit back and watch, or learn, and get some hands on.

I look forward to seeing friends, acquaintances, and meeting a new network of people.  (I am also looking forward to touching someone else’s fabric, call me a fabric pervert!)  The idea of splurging on some fabric has got me a little excited too!

Workin hard to get this just right for those in attendance!  I am excited with the prospect of having a day out as well as the interaction with like minded people.

Will I see you there?


D9P Quilted

This disappearing 9 patch was pure joy to make from start to finish!  Precut friendly, easy, quick!  I highly recommend this pattern to all experience levels.

I went scrappy with mine, but you could go any way you like!  My neutrals are very busy blacks and I love the loud combinations with color.

The color combinations I chose reminds me of the old granny square afghans that are found on the backs of many couches.


I quilted this in teal thread.  I was going to go black thread but realized just a tad extra of color is not going to take away from this busy quilt.  I went with squares and rectangles in a nice free motion forgiving geometric pattern.  Sorry no video as I have a hard enough time drawing a straight line let alone quilting one free hand.


I also dug deep into the stash and did some panel quilting on an old vest fabric.  This is an excellent way to practice free motion feathers.  No video of this because of the thread matching so well, it would not show up on camera.


I managed to sew one more Alone Star.  This week is slated for binding of one last quilt to put into the Quilt Hop here in town.


I did not meet much of my quilty goals.  It was a week of extra driving and allowing others to take up much of my time.  That is over with, and as a result, have greater peace of mind.  A wonderful way to start the weekend, or any day….with piece of mind Quilty style.

Linking up with Julie, The Crafty Quilter, for the work in progress on my disappearing 9 patch.


Thanks for stopping in, would love to hear from you in the comment section!

Alone Star! Anniversary ~ Tutorial

Wholly Toledo!  I just celebrated my 3rd WordPress Blog-iversary!  Jeeze in the three years I have made many quilts.  I will have to do a recap soon.

My Lone Star 4 patches are coming along, and I got the itch to stitch them together.  I learned a few things and thought I would do a tutorial to capture the moment for those interested in mastering Y-seams.


Notice the two blocks above right sides together stitched starting at the center point, stopping short about a 1/4 inch at the other end.  This is key to Y-seam success.


Next at the point of stitching end and where the two halves come together at the point, fold back one 4 patch out of the way to prep for the next step.


Pin square block to 4 patches at seam fold back, matching the three points.


Stitch. Ensure the start point of stitching starts 1/4 inch from the raw edges.


Here is the seam without the machine in the way.  Notice the stitching begins at 1/4 inch in.  Do not back stitch at anytime.  This process may require to remove a stitch and back stitching would make that more difficult.


Now ensure that your raw edges are in alignment on the next side  Pin, then stitch.


Here is the flip side of the block.  Imagine the purple edge nearest the bottom of the photo.  That is what you stitch next.  The opposite side of the Y.


Again take special care to not stitch that first 1/4 inch.


After stitching both sides of the Y clip the seam bulk, near side and far side.  The middle is the orange, do not clip the orange.  This will require you to fold parts out of the way while carefully trimming.


Far side is now trimmed too.


Press seam open.  I finger press all seams on the star as they are all bias.  I do not want to distort those stretchy edges.


Press the orange as shown above. Repeat this process for each Y.  Incidentally I have made big squares for the smaller Y’s.  When pressing at the end, I find this more forgiving.


Sew two star quadrants.


Ensure you repeat the 1/4 inch stop at the Y.


Finger press open.


To bulk down this seam and to remove a mountain forming, I have clipped the raw edge at the seam.  This helps a lot!


Fold back at the Y and place a larger orange square.




Then stitch.  You will come to the square overage from the first 4 Y seam.


Trim with scissors approximately flush with other raw edge.


On the flip side repeat, ensuring that the other 4 patch is folded out of the way.  Mind your 1/4 start at the Y.


Press square completely flat.  Remember right now you are only finger pressing.


Repeat for the other half.


Join halves and now join two more large corner orange squares.  (and laundry is almost done, HA!)


Press….start at the outside of the block and work your way in.  If the center becomes a mound, spray starch on the mound and press out the mound.  Press …..DO  NOT IRON… there is a difference.


You are now ready to trim.  I use two sides at a time to trim, coming out from my star points 1/4 inch.  Move ruler to the other two sides and square up the block.  Notice my larger squares are in the corner.  If you turn the block and place the smaller squares in the corner it sets the block on point and cuts the block smaller.  (ask me how I know :)!)


One side is off a bit but this is a true square.


So now do I sew them together on point?  Or in rows.  I will be making more blocks and then make that decision.

This Alone Star is coming right along.


Used the parallelogram die from accuquilt to cut the pieces.

The large squares are 5 inch, the smaller ones are 4 1/2 inches

Thread used for piecing is 50 wt.  If you use thicker thread, it can affect your angles and mess up your seam allowance.  Adjust accordingly.

I gave a tutorial on sewing the 4 patches together if you are interested to see those notes, click here

Well that wraps things up for the week.  My goals for the upcoming week:

  • Create more scrappy Alone Star blocks
  • Backing purchased for D9P and that will need to be sewn.  I aim to quilt that next.  I will do a geometric square pattern and will upload a video of how that is done in the coming week.

In the meantime, enjoy the weekend, and thanks for reading my blog!

Dreaming Big and A Thrifty Score

I try to hit the thrift shops once a week.  I have found that certain days are better for finding stuff I need or want.  This week, after digging through the craft boxes under the infant tables I found a bag of scrap fabric.  Upon closer inspection, they were strings!  Some sewn!  The colors of hunter green burgundy, and mauve all reminisce of a time not too far back in the 90s.

This will become something some day.

And a few weeks back I finished the dream big panel.  Had not gotten a good time for photo op, that finally happened.  Got to practice my feather work.  Not perfect, but perfect enough to use.

dream big

dream big 1

The backing for this finally finished up the bolt.  I have had this awhile and glad it has been reduced to scraps.  My thread did not match well, but I kind of like the contrast.  Lavender and teal thread.

dream big 2

I am going to have 9 quilts this year for our annual Quilt Hop.  I bet I will never come close to that number in the future.  (All though there was that year where oodles of babies caused me to have 16 quilts, lots smaller ones.  Since those were gifts they were not shown at the hop)

I still have the D9P to quilt.  Still looking for a backing.  Still brainstorming on my quilting options.  A bit of work left to do in the next three weeks.

In the mean time, I probably need to shift my focus on some UFOs.  My project shelves are cleared of much.  Those UFO’s remain.  I need to pick one and stick with it, overcome the hurdles in my mind and just sew.

Do any of you get that way?  You come to a point where it is not new and shiny as projects go and you lose interest?  I have become this way in the last few years.  I think it is because of pinterest dangling the carrots of beautiful masterpiece quilts that so inspire.  Lovely eye candy out there, it seems to have unfocused me a bit.  I need to get my focus back.

Well I am off to do the motherly deeds of the evening.  Have a fantastic week and thanks for reading my blog!