Creative Bee Studios

Sweet Ideas for Creative Minds - #usebothsides

Category: Technique (page 2 of 4)

Traveling Quilts

Do you travel with quilts? Guilty! I take quilts on vacations, retreats, even short hotel stays…for warmth and beauty, to work on, to photograph, and to just enjoy.

Last week I had the pleasure of taking 40 quilts and a power point guild presentation to Memphis, TN (Cordova, to be exact) to the home of the PUPS (Pickin’ Up the Pieces) Quilt Guild.

I find it fascinating to see the differences between different quilting groups. Size alone can change the dynamics of a group. Meeting location is another factor. Personalities of the members can change how a guild operates. What seems to be constant, though, among all guilds is that the love of quilting, creating, and discovering new opportunities outweighs any of the challenges brought to a group of women (with a sprinkling of men).

A few take-aways I recall from visiting PUPS include:

Show and Tell:

I didn’t get all the details,  but there was this Master List of projects that the members must have filled out earlier in the year and when  a show and tell item from that list was completed, that quilter got credit and, I think, entered into a drawing for retreat funds! How cool is THAT? Look at all this SHOW AND TELL from only 22 members present!!! I really liked being able to go around and look at each quilt closely during the break!  I did later find out that this particular meeting was their LAST CHANCE to complete those projects and that may have contributed to their prolific quilting!Image of QuiltsImage of Show and Tell Quilts

 

Image of QuiltsImage of PatternsBlock-of-the-Month:

Being in charge of Block-of-the-Month for my guild (blatant promotion to follow), I was surprised when their quilters showed up with their blocks dutifully completed for that month and laid them in a pile on a table. The PUPS gals take those blocks and make them up into quilts for their community. It’s a really nice way to help the community while quilters  learn new techniques.

 

Virtual Retreats:

I thought this sounded like loads of fun! Pick a weekend (pretty far in advance for planning purposes). Choose your projects, your favorite jammies, and snacks and have your own retreats at home – but shared with pictures and videos on the guild Facebook page! Sounds like a winter thing to me…although my studio feels like winter year round, so I am game whenever!

I’m always a bit nervous before giving a presentation, not because I’m not prepared…but because I might go off script (“I am not a THIEF?”) ugh! Thankfully, I didn’t know before I got to town that I had SUCH BIG SHOES to fill:  Marie Bostwick (My Favorite Author) had spoken the month before. Had I known that, I would’ve driven there a month earlier! Thankfully it didn’t sink in until the next day that I was following that awesomeness. (I’m pretty sure we’d be besties, if she actually knew me;)) She’s a class-act and I was honored to follow her.

A big shout-out and thank-you to the PUPS Quilt Guild for their hospitality!

Blatant Advertising for BOM and some summertime quilt patterns:

 

 

 

Join all the fun by subscribing below – you’ll get a post once a week sent to your email. Check back often for new announcements…I’ve got some secrets to share! Join the FREE River Heritage Mystery at any time – it’s not too late! Please share this post, my Etsy shop, and website on Facebook and pin on Pinterest! Thank you for following!

Introducing…Angelina

Pointe shoes are just…beautiful. This #usebothsides quilt pattern is for the ballerina in your life.Image of Pointe Shoe Quilt

Angelina Ballerina is a cute little mouse who loves to go to ballet lessons. Part of the American Girl collection, we had (er, still have) the dolls, her stage with a player piano, and many accessories. And…Angelina wore pointe shoes.Image of Mouse Doll

Both of our daughters loved ballet…but I’m not sure either of them would have stayed with it if they’d ever thought pointe shoes were off the table.

Pointe was the point!

I was excited to find focus fabric which works for a new #usebothsides quilt pattern with pointe shoes as the focus! I did my research and then checked with my youngest who is still taking  pointe  (as a senior in college) to make certain the  shoes in my pattern  were properly on pointe!

Angelina Quilt Pattern uses both sides of one focus fabric for the shoes and ribbons, tights and soles (reversed), and the binding on a fun, scrappy background.

Image of Paige

Paige, 2011

Pointe isn’t all glamour and glory, though. Mom’s of pointe students are well aware of the time spent stitching in ribbons and elastic. Girls generally never outgrow point shoes because they break down too quickly and must be replaced often. They take special fittings and there are hundreds of options from which to choose.

Image of Jacq on Pointe

Jacquelyn 2018

For the young dancer, pointe shoes seem to be a right of passage. It takes determination, maturity, time, and skill…and the acceptance of bloody toes, ugly feet, and a large collection of expensive and eventually smell shoes!

Determined girls wouldn’t have it any other way.

 

See all the #usebothsides patterns HERE.

Angelina Quilt Pattern and Focus Fabric Kit now available at www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeBeeStudios!

Favorite Binding Tool

As a new quilter (and even as a more experienced, but less prolific quilter), I would struggle with attaching binding to my quilts.

I’d refer to my Happy Endings book each time I came to that part of the quilt-making process and try to remember how to prepare and put on binding. Even after I understood the technique, there would be so much time in between bindings that I couldn’t remember how to do it. Image of Rule 'n Gauge Tool

While trying to get the end my stitching to the exact size of my seam allowance, I’d use a familiar tool, mostly used in garment construction.  One brand calls it a “Rule ‘n Gauge”. In addition to providing a precise measurement, I use the straight edge of this little tool to give me a perfectly square fold for my binding corners. While any straight edge will do, this is a thin and readily available tool that has passed the test of time for me. Image of Quilt Binding

Having made 14 patterns in nine months, stitching on binding is second nature to me, but I still use the Rule ‘n Gauge every time.

What’s your favorite binding tool?

Remember to add prairie points (Click here) for easy hanging options before you turn your binding!

Headed to Paducah for AQS Quilt Week? See you at Hancock’s of Paducah! Take a picture with any or all of the ten #usebothsides quilts and post on Facebook with the hashtag for a chance to win a pattern of your choice!

Image of Bee Quilt

Phoebee Quilt Pattern

Chain-piecing a Quilt Block

When piecing a sampler quilt (like the current River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt), chain piecing individual blocks can save you time and help you stay organized.

Since we have all levels of quilters participating in the mystery, I want to share a technique which would help our newer quilters down the road. Chain-piecing.  It’s something I take for granted now, but I remember the lightbulb going on when I was first taught to chain-piece. Here’s how I approach chain-piecing an individual block (which might just show up down the road (river?) in your mystery quilt).

Have you ever given road directions to someone and said, “It’s not nearly as confusing as it sounds.”? That’s how describing chain-piecing is. Hand’s on, it’s easy to grasp. In words, it seems confusing. Take it a step at a time the first few times and soon you’ll be chain-piecing without even thinking about it.

*Cut and prepare your block pieces. In the example I use here, the block is made from all half-square triangles (HST).

 

*Arrange your block pieces according to the block design. (I like to use my ironing board surface.) If it’s a complicated design, I like to check myself by taking a black and white picture (to see value) to make sure I’ve arranged the pieces correctly.

Image of Quilt Block

This quilt block is made of four rows and four columns.

 

*Notice that there are four rows (left to right) and four columns (top to bottom). Turn each HST in Column 2 over onto the HST to the left, in Column 1, right sides together (RST) as shown.

Image of Chain Piecing a Quilt Block

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1, RST.

Likewise, turn each HST from Column 4 over onto the HST to the left, in Column 3, RST.

 

Layer the sets in order, starting with Row 4 on the bottom, offsetting them to keep them distinctly separate as shown below.

Image of Layered Block Sets

Layer the sets from the bottom up to take to your machine.

Carry them to the machine, keeping them in order.

 

Starting with the top set, stitch along the right edge. 

As you get close to the end of stitching the first set, have the next set ready to slide under the presser foot. (I love using my knee bar for this step.) Stop stitching for a moment before you come off the edge of the first set. Slide the second set just under the foot so that it catches the feed dogs, but isn’t touching the first set and continue stitching. It is okay to have two or three “air” stitches between sets. Repeat this for all the sets.

 

Trim the threads between all the sets, keeping them in order. (Your first set is from Columns 1 & 2 in Row 1 and your last set is from Columns 3 & 4, Row 4.)

Press according to block instructions and arrange them in again, only now you have two columns.

Image of Chain Piecing Technique

Now you have two columns.

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1, RST, for all four rows. Again, layer the four rows with Row 4 on the bottom and Row 1 on the top. Take to the machine and chain piece along the right edges.

Image of Chain Piecing Technique

Turn Column 2 onto Column 1 and stitch.

Clip threads, press, and arrange the rows in order. With the columns complete, you only have four rows left to piece.

Image of Block Rows

Rows 1 is at the top and Row 4 is at the bottom.

Continue by piecing the rows together, turning Row 1 down onto Row 2, RST. Nestle and pins the seams. Repeat for Row 3 and Row 4. Stitch along the top edges.

Trim and press. Now lay the two remaining rows in order. Turn Row 1 down onto Row 2. Nestle and pins the seams. Stitch along the top edge. Trim and press.

Remember to square and trim your block according to instructions.

If you are a new quilter, what techniques are you wanting to learn? If you are an experienced quilter, what are your favorites to share?

Month Four in the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt will be revealed on Monday, April 9 at 9 a.m.!Image of Three Quilt Blocks

 

 

Heading to AQS Quilt Week in Paducah? How about stopping in Hancock’s of Paducah? You’ll see TEN #usebothsides hanging there with patterns during the show!

Image of Three Quilts

Phoebee, Belle, and Lily

Image of Three Quilts

Rose, Emily, and Kate

Image of Cauldron Wall Hanging

Something’s Brewing

Image of Seahorse Quilt

Sally Quilt Pattern

Image of Flamingo Quilt

Fiona Quilt Pattern

Image of Poinsettia Quilt

Pepita Quilt Pattern

Yakity Yak – Let’s Talk Backs

Sometimes…er, many times…okaay, MOST of the time the back of my quilt is an afterthought. All of my excitement and energy is focused on the quilt top and when the top is finished, I want to quilt it NOW.Image of Quilt Back

I’ll have fleeting thoughts while stitching the top about what fabric I want on the back, but I’m not the type of quilter who generally purchases my backing ahead of time, unless I’ve purchased a kit.

Being a long-arm quilter, I do keep in mind the color of thread I’ll be quilting my top with because that’s the color I will have in my bobbin.  Beyond that, and especially in the last year, since I’ve knocked out 14 quilt patterns in nine months, time is the biggest factor I considered when choosing a backing.

Maybe that seems haphazard and disorganized, but, on the up-side, I have to say my backings have gotten more interesting in the last year!

Take Something’s Brewing, for example. Definitely time was a factor because it was a seasonal quilt I was designing in the fall. So as to not completely miss out on the current season, I had to get her done! Here’s what I did to use what I had on hand: Instant Bargello.Image of Cauldron Quilt

One of my favorite quilting books is called Instant Bargello by Susan Kisro.Image of Book I grabbed some scraps and did three little columns of that technique which gave me enough width for the backing. It was fun and fast!

Notice the Prairie Point Hanging Method (click here for more information)?

Those prairies points proved a bit sentimental for me because one of the fabrics was a Debbie Mumm which belonged to my mother-in-law, Pat. I have little bits of her fabrics in a lot of my #usebothsides quilts.

Something’s Brewing with the label, too. It just couldn’t be a square label. A shout-out to my friend, Mary, for encouraging me to put a little character into my labels! Notice it’s using the reverse side? (wink)

Do you have interesting back ideas? Please share in the comments section!

Subscribe below to get blog posts sent directly to your email or just check back each week!

In case you missed it, here is the link for the latest BOM block:Image of Tower Rock on Mississippi River

 

 

14 Ways to Use Both Sides of Fabric

Catch a few announcements, some stats, and snippets of things to come…

Last June I announced the first #usebothsides pattern, Phoebee.Image of Bee Quilt

Next came Belle and Lily and the trio made the Colorful Wings Collection. I’ve taught several classes of these winged gals since then and have another one tomorrow for 15 quilters with the Bootheel Quilters’ Guild.Image of Butterfly QuiltImage of Dragonfly Quilt

Image of Three Quilts on Fence

Phoebee, Belle & Lily

My Etsy shop was launched fall, 2017: www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeBeeStudios

I started shipping patterns all over the United States (and one to Canada)!

Rose was the first pattern in the Colorful Petals series.

I found her focus fabric in Branson, Missouri, as I raced through the shop, pulling out bolts to look at the reverse side while my dh waited in the car.Image of Flower Bouquet Quilt This fabric by Red Rooster was an instant winner! Notice the secondary scroll design that shows on the vase but really not so much on the front of the fabric (left accent strip).

Then came Emily,

Image of Sunflower Bouquet Wall Quilt

with a more rustic pottery vase and Kate, whose vase is perfect for large Kaffe Fassett Collective blooms!Image of Vase and Bouquet Quilt

Image of Three Quilts

Colorful Petals Quilt Patterns

Something’s Brewing was fun to design, using my Accuquilt for quick and easy bubbles (Scan N Cut works well, too). I am especially fond of the Honey Buzzard claw feet. This is the only one of my patterns at this point without a female name…just didn’t seem fair to use someone’s name. 🙂Image of Cauldron Wall Hanging

Next is JOY. She’s the second pattern to use templates instead of the fabric’s flowers for the reverse cutting.Image of JOY Quilt

One of my favorites happened because a quilter signed up for the Colorful Petals class, but wanted to use poinsettia fabric. A vase just wouldn’t do! The reversed fabric on this pot MAKES this quilt!
Image of Poinsettia Quilt

Pepita Quilted Wall Hanging

Around Christmas time, I received my first order from Nancy’s Notions catalog. Phoebee, Belle, and Lily were featured in the next issue!

Next is my Coastal Series which includes a seahorse, a flamingo, and a lighthouse.Image of Seahorse QuiltImage of Lighthouse Quilt

Again I used my Accuquilt GO! circle die for the bubbles on Sally, the seahorse. Fiona’s (flamingo) legs and palm branches are reversed. Liberty, the lighthouse is made with a Kaffe stripe which looks both nautical and patriotic when paired with the patriotic background fabrics. Image of Flamingo Quilt

In February Hancock’s of Paducah began to carry seven of my patterns in their Paducah warehouse store.

Many guild members heading to retreat (32) took their pictures with my patterns and posted them with #usebothsides to be entered into a drawing. One gal even took pics of both sides–of herself!  During retreat I just happened to look at Hancock’s online store and found Phoebee! (She’s international, now!)

Nancy’s Notions placed an order for Rose, Emily, and Kate! Watch for them in a future catalog!

 Phoebee, Belle, Lily, Emily, Kate, Sally, and Pepita will be hanging in the Hancock’s of Paducah store in time for the AQS Quilt Week!

The first petite pattern I designed is called Grace. Image of Grace Quilt Pattern

Introducing pattern number 14: Beatrice

Image of Bunny QuiltBeatrice is made with a twist from the norm: I used the reverse side for the bunny and the front of the fabric for the flowers. She just needed to be a bit sneaky!

Just a couple of hints for patterns in the works: Stick to the pointe and have a whale of a good time! There are more ideas swimming around in my head, just waiting for the right focus fabric to appear! What have you made using both sides?

Along with this review of the fun developments that  have happened in the last 3/4 of a year, I want to thank all of you for your support, especially my family and friends. A special shout out to my local quilt guild – they don’t even moan (out loud) when I stand up for show and tell each month with another one of those both sides quilts – you rock, River Heritage Quilt Guild! I truly appreciate all the support!

Join in the fun of the free River Heritage Mystery Quilt- Month Three:Image of Tower Rock on Mississippi River

 

Month Three BOM Mystery Quilt

The third block of the River Heritage Mystery Quilt is revealed!

River Heritage

Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt

Pictured is Tower Rock (Grand Tower) on the frozen Mississippi River.

This photo, taken by Jake Pohlman in January 2018,  shows people crossing the frozen river to the landmark island and rock formation usually only accessible by land during extreme drought.  Tower Rock is located in the Brazeau Township, Perry County, Missouri, near the town of Wittenberg, Missouri, and across the river from Grand Tower, Illinois. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1970. Jacques Marquette, a French explorer, mentioned this island in 1673 when he passed by this formation. Tower Rock has been known to instill both fear and poetry in river pilots due to the force of the whirlpool effect the water hitting the formation creates.

Month 3 – Flock of Geese

Welcome to the third month in the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt! A flock of geese is a common sight in our area, especially in the fields adjacent to the river line. Flock of Geese is made with two easy components but, as with Railroad Crossing, it can be used to make a stunning quilt by itself or with a secondary block. As I mentioned in the introduction, I am making my quilt blocks very scrappy, so where it calls for one large dark and one large light square, I make two to achieve a scrappy look. I toss my extra squares in my BOM scrap bin to grab for future blocks.

Flock of Geese uses dark and light fabrics. It is an easy block made with two four-patches of half-square triangles (HS) and two large half-square triangles.

Printer Friendly Version

Cutting Instructions

From light fabrics:                            From dark fabrics:                Image of Flock of Geese Block                      

1 – 7-inch square                                1 – 7-inch square

4 – 4-inch squares                               4 – 4-inch squares

RST = right sides together

 

Draw a diagonal line on the reverse side of the 7-inch and 4-inch light squares. Lay the light squares on the same size dark squares, matching edges, RST. Using a quarter-inch foot, sew ¼ inch on each side from the drawn line. Cut on the line. Press each half square triangle towards the darker fabric. Square/trim each large HS to 6 ½ inches and small HS to 3 ½ inches.

Lay out the pieces according to the block picture. Make four-patches out of the small HS by turning the right-side HS onto the left-side HS, RST. Stitch across the top. Press Row 1 to the right, Row 2 to the left. Flip Row 1 onto Row 2, RST, match seams, and pin. Stitch. Press open. Square/trim to 6 ½ inches.

Flip the top four-patch onto the large HS. Stitch. Press to the HS.

Flip the bottom HS onto the four-patch. Stitch. Press to HS.

Turn the top row down onto the bottom row, RST, match seams, and pin. Stitch across the top. Press four-patches open. Trim the block to 12 1/2 inches.

You have made your Flock of Geese block! Share your block using #riverheritage on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! Month Four will be posted on April 9, 2018. Subscribe below to get posts automatically emailed to you!

Simple Designs for Stunning Quilts

Grace features a soft blue mason jar with a lovely spray of pink flowers.Image of Grace Pattern Cover

 

She’s petite. Just 18 x 24 inches.

The Grace quilt pattern is a great way to try out the #usebothsides pattern. As with all the patterns,  you learn how to audition your focus and background fabrics to make a delightful, cheery wall hanging. With a focus fabric kit (you still provide the background fabrics), you know you’ll have the perfect mason jar and floral spray.

Shop all the #usebothsides patterns and kits HERE.

Next Colorful Petals Class:

Image of Three Quilts

Colorful Petals Quilt Patterns

Saturday, March 17th

10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

at The Golden Needle in Cape Girardeau, MO

Join the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt fun! Click the pictures here for links to the Introduction and Months One and Two:

Subscribe below to get posts automatically sent to you once a week.

Visit www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeBeeStudios.com

Free Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt

Month One for River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt is well underway!

With Month Two being revealed right here on Monday, February 12th, I thought we’d take a look at the blocks shared so far with the hashtag: #riverheritage

These blocks use dark, medium, and light fabrics of your choice.

See the Introduction HERE for more information about the quilt, including the setting.

Image of Mystery Quilt Poster

Click here for link to Introduction.

Click HERE for Month One: Paddle Wheel

Image of BOM

Click here for link to Month One.

 

Look at all the fabulous fabrics used in these Paddle Wheels!Image of Paddle Wheel BlocksImage of Paddle Wheel BlocksImage of Paddle Wheel Blocks

It’s not too late to start this free mystery quilt. Make your Paddle Wheel today!

Subscribe below to receive blog posts directly to your email or check back here on the second Monday of each month for the next block reveal!

Share your blocks with this in the post: #riverheritage

#usebothsides Pattern NEWS: Sally has a new friend!

Image of Flamingo Quilt

Fiona – Click HERE

Image of Seahorse Pattern

Sally – Click HERE

Shop all the #usebothsides patterns at www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeBeeStudios

One Easy Way to Conquer Color

Image of Quick Trip Quilt

Tropical Trip/Quick Trip by Eleanor Burns

I wish I knew how many books there are which explain how to use color in making quilts. I also wish I knew how many times I looked at the color wheel, read about it, studied it as long as my attention span would allow…and sighed out of frustration and boredom.  Image of Fabric Stash

Many books about color go into great detail explaining the principles for mastering color in quilts. You can learn about hue, color, and intensity, warm and cool colors, the harmonies of  triadic, analogous, split-complimentary, double-complimentary, complementary colors and much, much more–WHOLE BOOKS of small print, explaining everything you’d ever want to know about color!

But they don’t work for me.

NEVER HAVE I EVER read about color and been inspired!

For me, I do better by “studying” nature. Sometimes its from a picture and sometimes it’s from real life, but either way, I find that nature, whether its a single flower, a landscape view, or a beach at sunset has perfect coloring AND its inspirational! (Can you guess my favorite place to be?) See “Sally” HERE for a hint!

I will be sharing information about color in future posts — but that’s all it is, information. It’s good and important information, but its information I prefer to use  AFTER I’ve been inspired, as a check to make sure I’m covering all the bases and have thought my choices through.

I will admit I am very much a color person. Color can evoke emotions in me that seem just a little over the top — I REALLY, REALLY love some and REALLY don’t care for others. Maybe you are like that, too? How do you choose color when your canvas is blank?  Share in the comments section below. What are your scenes in nature?

FREE Block-of-the-Month MYSTERY QUILT #riverheritage

Month Two will be posted on February 12! Register below to get posts automatically!

 

Image of Mystery Quilt Poster

Click here for link to Introduction.

Image of BOM

Click here for link to Month One.

Older posts Newer posts