Friday, October 21, 2016

Friday Finishes and a Meeting

I've got quite a bit of quilting to do this weekend because I was able to finish some quilt tops. Yay!

 I think Jack's quilt will be the first one quilted. :-)

Next up will probably be this Strip Shenanigans quilt I finished yesterday for the Flying Horse Farm. These are the blocks I was using as leaders and enders Sunday. I finished the blocks when I got home yesterday and put them together very quickly. The binding will be scrappy, made from misc. strips from inside the blocks. This quilt measures 54" x 64", which is perfect for the beds at the camp. Wait a minute! I just realized that I don't have to quilt this. I just send the top and binding. Yippee!  

These two Quilts of Valor quilts are ready for quilting and I have the bindings ready for both, which always speeds things up for me.

I think I'll be a busy gal this weekend!

Yesterday I mentioned that I was going to share some details about a dinner I had Monday night. Here you go...

Have you ever "met" someone on-line and chatted with them for a long time but never met them in person? I've been commenting on Scott Fortunoff's Studio e Blog for quite a while as well as e-mailing back and forth about a variety of quilting subjects.

In case you don't know, Scott is a fourth generation textile executive. He is part of the Jaftex Corporation which includes Studio e Fabrics, Henry Glass & Co., AE Nathan, Blank Quilting Corporation, and Fabric Editions, Inc. He is one busy guy!

A while back, Scott send me an e-mail thanking me for being a loyal reader of his blog and a consistent commenter. I'm just thrilled he didn't think I was a stalker! :-) Anyway, in his e-mail he wondered when we would meet in person. I chuckled to myself thinking that I should suggest to Jack that we make a trip to NY so we could enjoy the sites and I could meet Scott. Instead, I responded with asking if he ever ventures west to Ohio. As it turned out, he had a meeting scheduled near Cleveland in mid-October and wondered if I lived anywhere near there. Well shoot, I live just about an hour from Cleveland so we made tentative plans to meet.

Those plans were solidified; and after flight delays on his part, we met Monday night for dinner.

I was thrilled to also spend the evening with Karen Junquet, the art director at Jaftex.

These two are very talented, energetic and fun! We talked about a ton of things - some quilting, some not. We laughed a lot, and just had a good time.

Scott asked me how many quilts I've made. (Jack has asked me that too and when I told Scott that my husband asks me that, he says that it's a man thing to want to "know the numbers.") I had to admit that I don't know for sure, but it's a bunch. I know how many I donate because I keep track for tax purposes, but I have not really kept track of the others. I know I should, but I just don't do it. But, after these conversations, I've decided to get at least a rough estimate. I've made bed quilts, wall hangings, lap quilts, table runners, class samples, baby quilts, etc. and I will  get numbers for each of the categories and then a total. I'm going to try to do this soon, but we'll see. 

Scott, thanks for the invitation and meeting. I look forward to our continued conversations. Now I have to get busy and quilt!

I'm linking up to

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Two Quilts at the Same Time

I love it when I can be really productive!

I've finished the 80 blocks for the QOV project I started working on Sunday, and I've sewn them into rows. The rows are paired up and sewn, so I just have four more seams and this will be ready for quilting. Yay!!

I really like how this has turned out; and I am really happy to have been able to use a lot of scraps to make this quilt. The blocks finish 8" and the layout is 8 x 10, so they finished quilt will be 64" x 80". Perfect for a QOV!

I will make this quilt again, using strips and scraps as originally planned. Check out Monday's post HERE to see how the blocks will be pieced differently and the layout will change.  

I have to get my husband, the official "quilt namer" thinking about what to call this quilt. I have a few ideas, but he always comes up with some winners. 

While I was finishing up these blocks and sewing the rows, I was piecing some blocks for another Flying Horse Camp quilt. I love to chain piece when I can and it worked out perfectly to be sewing blocks into rows at the same time I was making new blocks.

I have six of the 30 blocks pieced for the next quilt! Yippee!

Check back tomorrow when I share details about the dinner I had Monday night with a couple of really fun people.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Design Wall Monday

Jack's quilt is sewn together and I just need to find time to quilt and bind it. I am very pleased with how it turned out and think I found the perfect backing fabric. It is white with black/grey words on it that all relate to music. (Jack sings in a couple of groups, has played the guitar, and loves to play the keyboard with the grandkids.) I have not shown him that fabric because I want it to be a surprise.  :-)

I've been playing with some new ideas that use pre-cuts (fat quarters, strips, charms, etc.) and this is one on which I'm working now.

I originally made this using strips (2 1/2" x WOF). Two jelly roll strips makes two opposing blocks. Easy Peasy!  :-) I like the looks of that, and it made piecing go very quickly. (I REALLY like that!) Here is an example of opposing blocks. 

The quilt becomes very scrappy and unlike the red, white and blue quilt above, I alternated the blocks so there are no matching block seams. By doing that, it completely changes the look of the quilt. I can't find the picture of the quilt right now, but I think you get the idea. Here's a sketch of the quilt with the blocks rotated.

Saturday evening, I was gifted a big piece of neutral fabric (3+ yards of a cream-on-cream print) and I thought it would be a perfect fabric for a QOV project. I'd been playing with the math to make the above blocks using fat quarters so I decided to pull a bunch of red and blue fat quarters (and scraps) and use the new fabric too. I used the neutral in all of the blocks and just made blue and red blocks. I sketched before I sewed and I'm glad I did. I didn't love how it looked to rotate the blocks. I decided to NOT make opposing blocks and line the blocks up straight across the quilt. I think it creates a fun chain-like effect. In order to make sewing the blocks together easier, I pressed all the blue blocks to the rectangle and all the red blocks to the pieced units.  Very quick to piece, and I like the result.

I have 6 of the 10 rows I'll need to make this the size I need for a QOV, and I have plenty of fabric to do that. I'll finish piecing this later this week and it should be ready to use this for the QOV presentation I will be making on Veteran's Day at school. I think I already have enough for the presentation, but I have to double check numbers. Besides, I like to take a couple of extra quilts just in case there was a mix up in the count. I don't ever want to be short and have someone not receive a quilt! :-)

What's on your design wall today?

Check out the eye candy at

Judy L's Patchwork Times


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tip Tuesday! - Challenge

"Tip Tuesday!" - Challenge
I love learning new things and then sharing that knowledge with my quilting friends. So, every Tuesday (or most Tuesdays!) I'll provide some tips, hints, tricks, tutorials, shortcuts, etc. that I've learned over the years and share them here on the blog.

"Tip Tuesday" will be a collection of information about a wide variety of subjects garnered from a large variety of sources. I am not an expert by any means and do not take credit for being the great wizard behind all of these hints and tips. I will gladly give due credit whenever possible.

These tips will be archived and accessible to you just by clicking on the "Tip Tuesday!" tab above.

Read, enjoy, and be inspired!


It's Tuesday, and I have a Tip Tuesday! post. I know that I've been very lax with my Tip Tuesday! posts, but I've simply been making the decision to prioritize things and not stress out about making sure I have something to post every week. I will continue to have Tip Tuesday! posts, but it probably won't be done weekly.


I know that I've discussed challenging yourself in the past, but this time I want you to consider challenging yourself in a bit different way. Do some research and join a swap on line, with members of your sewing group, or with just a couple of friends. To make the swap easier, find a theme or cause and use that as your starting point.

For the past two years, I've participated in the Teal Mini Swap hosted by Beth Helfter of EvaPaige Quilt Designs. This swap is an annual event intended to raise awareness of ovarian cancer, raise funds for The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, and give quilters a challenge to make something and send to another quilter. This swap costs $15 to join, but that's because it's a fundraiser. You can join or organize a swap that is free.

Each participant of the Teal Mini Swap received a small piece of a specially selected teal fabric. (This year it was this teal fabric from the Basic Mixology line from Moda.) This fabric must be used somewhere in the project.

When we registered at the end of August, we decided if we wanted to make a mini quilt  - 18" square maximum, or a mug rug - 10" square maximum. Beth received all of the registrations and paired up partners according to what they wanted to make and their fabric or quilt style preferences. We then had until October 2nd to make and send our quilts to our partners.  

This is what I made for my partner, Athena.


Athena really likes Tula Pink fabrics and she said that she's been a bit enamored with the color emerald lately. She also likes modern quilting, so I used an emerald background fabric and one complete charm pack to create her mini quilt.

There were duplicates in the charm pack, but that worked out well. After I decided which fabrics would be used in the quilt body, I chose two for the hanging pockets on the back and then pieced the rest of them for a scrappy binding.   

I usually diagonally piece my binding segments, but since these were only 5", I stitched them end to end, as you can see in the picture below. I like how this turned out! This was a bit challenging because I was working with 5" pieces, but I'm please that I decided to do this instead of pick a single fabric and just bind it with that. Challenge issued - challenge accepted - challenge completed!

Here's a picture that Athena took of everything I sent her. The emerald fabric shows up better in her picture than it does in mine. I included a few extras with her mini. I sent along a pack of 20 Tula Pink charm squares, a magnetic needle holder and pin (she does a lot of hand work), and a copy of the Quilt Sampler magazine that featured M & E Quilt Shoppe and the quilt I designed for them. I used a scrap of the Tula Pink fabric from the mini to make a card for her as well.

I had some yardage of the teal fabric in my stash so I decided to make a second mini quilt, in case someone's life got crazy and they weren't able to make one. I've told Beth that she is welcome to use this, if needed. This is very simple and to the point.

Here's the pieced backing. I used the teal fabric in the front, on the back, and in the bias binding. It kind of wraps around the quilt, like a barber poll.  :-)

If it ends up that Beth does not need this to be sent to someone, I think I'll just send it to her as a way to say, "Thanks for all you do!"

Here's the wonderful mini quilt AND mug rug that I received from Athena. She included a couple of extras as well - a coffee mug (with a lid!) and a journal that I have already been using.

I love the fabrics she used and the fun setting. When I signed up, I said that I really had no preference on the fabric choices or style of quilting. I really do like just about anything, and I wanted it to be easy for my partner. After some messaging back and forth, Athena asked if I liked modern and of course I said yes. She decided to go with that and I love what she did! The mug rug and coffee mug are in my sewing room and the mini is in the computer room.

So, back to the reason for this Tip Tuesday! post. Challenge yourself with a swap. Be honest with yourself and your partner about your skill level, and then do the best work you can. Don't stress over this, but take it seriously. When you are making something for someone else, you tend to be a little more careful about matching seams and pressing accurately.

Maybe start small and with a group of friends. Or, jump in head first and swap with complete strangers. Whatever you do, have fun! 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Design Wall Monday

I've finally finished all of the blocks for Jack's grey and yellow quilt. He decided that he wanted two vertical rows of yellow blocks, so that's what he's getting. I still think I would have liked just one row of yellow (second row from the left), but since it's his quilt I let him decide. Perhaps I'll have to make one for me and just have the one row. :-)

I still have a bunch of work to do before I start subbing long-term, so I don't know when I'll get this sewn together, but hopefully it won't take long.

I've been working on this and one other project as a leader/ender project, so I actually have two quilts that are ready to have bocks sewn into rows. I'll get this quilt off the wall and organize the rows so they are ready to sew and then I'll put the other blocks up and take a picture.

The second project is a simple quilt made using 48 - 5 rail fence blocks, and I've used just three fabrics throughout the entire quilt. It's a Quit of Valor project and I'm excited to say that all of the fabric has come from stash. YIPPEE!

Check out what other quilters have on their design walls.

Go to Judy L's Patchwork Times


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Handmade Halloween - Fall Quilts

Here's another addition to the
Handmade Halloween
Linky Party

If you have not done so already, you should jump over to
to see some awesome Halloween-inspired creations.
I am often amazed at the talent and creativity I see as I cruise blogs, and this linky party definitely does not disappoint.

Today, I've decided to show a few more of my Fall and/or Halloween- inspired quilts.

I already showed you my favorite pumpkin wall hanging and placemats, my Maple Leaf Log Cabin, the small fussy cut pumpkin quilt, but I have a couple other quilts that I've made that were inspired by this time of year. I no longer own some of these quilts, but I do know that they are all being used and loved by someone that I love.
If I still owned these quilts, I would have tried to get better pictures. Wow! I really do need help in the photography department. :-)

I love the colors of Autumn and find myself drawn to them frequently. Even if I had no intention of making a Halloween quilt, sometimes it just happens.

This is Sadie's quilt. From the front, it looks innocent enough, although it is a spider web pattern. I usually see the secondary star pattern before I see the spider web, so it really could pass as a non-Halloween quilt.

But, check out the back!
I used glow in the dark thread from Superior Threads when I quilted this and I LOVE how it looks.

I used glow in the dark thread on top too, but I was not able to get a good picture of it. (My step-daughter Linda took this picture and she did an awesome job. It makes me smile whenever I see it!)

This quilt is one of my all-time favorites because I love the fabrics. It's simple (small rail fence blocks on point made from a large variety of cheddar fabrics with alternating small squares of shirting fabric), but I LOVE it!  

I gave this to a very good friend who needed to know that she is loved. Knowing that she still uses it makes me smile.

I think I may have to dive into my stash and see if I could make one for ME.  :-)  

Here is a Fall quilt that I still own. It was my first Judy Niemeyer quilt, Glacier Star, done in Fall-inspired fabrics.

Thank you Sue Wilson for starting me on my path to Judy Niemeyer quilts. Not only have I made some awesome quilts, I've made some awesome friends too. (Yes Denise. That includes you! Thanks for letting me stay at your house every time I go to TN.) 

And finally, another quilt that has absolutely no Halloween fabrics in it, but it is THE Halloween quilt according to my grandchildren.

Unfortunately, this picture does not do this quilt justice so I just took the quilt outside and threw it on a chair to get a couple of quick pictures.

See! There are no Halloween fabrics in this quilt but it just screams Halloween to the grand kids. :-)

That's enough for today.

Give yourself a treat and head over to

for some Halloween Eye Candy!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Homemade Halloween

Welcome to my Handmade Halloween post!

Here's your warning!
This post is very picture-heavy.

Bernie, over at Needle and Foot is hosting a linky party to celebrate Halloween this year. Participants are linking new and old posts about all things spooky and Halloween-related. That means we'll see great ideas for quilts, decorations, costumes, etc.

I'm super excited about this, as I love Fall and all the hoopla associated with it - even raking leaves!

Of course, if you'd rather make a leaf quilt instead of raking leaves, you can always make one of my favorite quilts -
The Maple Leaf Log Cabin Quilt.

One of the things I like most about Halloween is seeing how creative people can get with their costumes and decorations.  I have to admit that I am not super-creative anymore when it comes to this, but when my children were young, we really got into it and had a wonderful time.

When times were lean, I created costumes with items that were just around the house. For example, one year Nikki was a basket of dirty laundry. I had a broken laundry basket that I cut out leg holes and added suspenders. Nikki wore a white leggings and a long sleeve white t-shirt. I threw some clothing in the basket (many were hanging over the sides because that's what our laundry baskets look like), and I attached clothing to the suspenders. It was pretty cute and she actually took first place for creativity at the Halloween party that year. 

That same year, Lynn was a bag of jelly beans and she won second place! I took a clear trash bag, cut holes in the bottom for her legs and tossed in a bunch of different colored small blown up balloons. With her big round cheeks, I must admit that she looked adorable.  :-)

Oh how I wish I had pictures of them! A bunch of my photos were destroyed when I moved from my old house. It makes me sad, but I still have a vivid memory of those costumes. (Maybe I'll ask the girls to recreate that for me so I can take pictures.)

The Halloween torch has been passed.
Nikki and Lynn know how to do it right. :-)

I don't usually go for the creepy, or scary decorations. Instead, I like lots of pumpkins, mums (especially when they are orange or burgundy), cornstalks, etc. Nikki created this fun display for her front porch last year.
I love the big eyes!

Of course, she had to add something yucky!

And there MUST be pumpkins!

This pumpkin wall hanging was made using an Eleanor Burns pattern and is a family favorite. 

The pattern includes instructions for making some placemats, which I made, but I changed it up to better fit our needs. 

I made the basic pumpkin the same, but made the face parts separately and backed them with timtex.

The placemats are now an interactive game and the face changes constantly, depending on who's here, how they feel, and how silly they want to be.

With the changes I made, the placemats have become one of our family's favorite Halloween decorations and traditions!. :-)


This is one of my favorite pictures of all time!
Sadie, Lynn, and Mom had such a good time playing while I was fixing dinner that night. 

I look at this picture often because it makes me smile. It warms my heart to know that Sadie still recognized Mom, who passed away 12/1/12.

Here's a pumpkin quilt I made a few years back. I still love it and now that it's October, I can hang it up!

Look at these fun fussy-cut block centers

And then we have the costumes! My girls really know how to make some awesome costumes. It is very rare that with of the girls buy costumes. Instead they "shop" their closet or Goodwill and find things that can be "adjusted" to fit their needs. Other than Lynn's outfit in 2014, all of the following costumes were handmade. Many times there is a theme involved for the costumes, but not always. It doesn't matter one way or the other, they always look great!

The weather was pretty crappy in 2014 and Avery was fighting a cold. She was not going to be trick or treating so Lynn decided to have her cousin paint Avery's face instead of getting all dressed up. Now this is the kind of pumpkin that I really like!  :-)  


That same year, Lynn dressed up too. Even before she was born, Peyton was participating in Halloween.  :-)

Nikki is definitely a creative gal! Check out her costume from 2014. And that face painting is amazing.

2014 was a year that didn't have a theme for Nikki's family, but they looked great anyway. (The paint is off the kids faces here; but trust me, it was awesome.)

Quinn made a pretty darn cute vampire!

Sadie was an amazing wind-up doll!

Ronan is just so darn cute as a piƱata!

I'm not sure what caused Sadie to make that expression, but I love this picture of her and Quinn.

Last year, Avery and Peyton were Little Bo Peep and her Sheep. Avery did NOT lose her sheep!  :-)

I don't have individual pictures of Nikki and kids, but here's a picture with all of her in-law cousins. Can you tell from the picture that the Marshalls all like Halloween too? Quinn is in the top row, second from the left. Ronan is the mummy in the middle row on the right, and Sadie is sitting on the ground at the bottom right. Nikki and Bailey are on the left, and in case you can't tell because they are sitting down, Nikki is a rainbow and Bailey is the pot of gold. I love that!!

Of course I am sure you can all relate to the picture below! There were more like this than the one above. :-)

2013 was a theme year for Nikki's family. They were all characters from the Wizard of Oz.

Quinn makes a great Cowardly Lion.
Oops! She's got her medal so she isn't cowardly any more.

Sadie is a beautiful Glenda - the Good Witch (although she is a bit preoccupied with the play cell phone here). 

Ronan was the most adorable Flying Monkey ever!

I don't have pictures of my son-in-laws Zach and Ty. Although they support Nikki and Lynn in their Halloween excitement, they don't usually dress up in costumes. They are usually found helping with the kids or passing out the candy. (Also, Zach has had to work more Halloween nights than not over the past few years, so he's had to miss out on all the fun.)

However, I did find this picture from 2010. Ty was a really good sport here and went trick or treating with Nikki's kids.


As you can tell, we like our Halloween here.

Check out the other participants in the Handmade Halloween Linky Party. 

I just know that you'll get inspired.