Category: Quilts (page 1 of 11)

Textures of Christmas Time

Do you use quilts in your Christmas decor? How about layering some additional textures among the quilts? Here are a couple ways to explore other techniques and textiles to add to your holiday handmade joy:

The background quilt (laser cut kit) was made a number of years ago, when aqua became a Christmas color! (I love aqua and it’s here to stay in parts of my Christmas/winter decorating!) This was such a fun kit and there were lots of added textures, like the skate strings, buttons, and “pearl” necklaces on the birds!

Add in a little punch needle snowman…

Image of Mini Punch Needle

Layered on a snowflake runner (snowflakes cut on Accuquilt)…

…add in a little manger scene made with vinyl and a wool candle wrap for another layer of crafting fun!

Image of Candlelight Wool Wrap and Manger Scene

To make the candle wrap, I just cut strips of muslin on the diagonal and stitched down the middle of them onto a piece of wool. I then threw them in the washer and dryer with a load of towels and they came out nice and fuzzy. I still plan to blanket stitch around the edges of the wool – oh, and it connects in back with a button and a thin hair elastic, sewn to the wool.

I made one several years ago for a friend, using the Accuquilt snowflake:

Image of Bear Quilt

This Christmas bear quilt was made from a McKenna Ryan kit – but I changed his hat and mitten and made them from an old wool sweater that was in my mother-in-law’s stash.

…and of course, JOY made from BOTH sides of a Hoffman California Fabric panel is keeping in the aqua winter theme.

Image of JOY Quilt Hanging
JOY Quilt Pattern

JOY and all her pals (quilt patterns and focus fabric kits) are found in my Etsy shop: Creative Bee Studios (Click HERE).

Wishing you layers of joy this Christmas season!

Sunrise Quilt Colors

The sunrise can inspire a whole quilt palette…

Following up on last week’s post (Nature’s Color Wheel – CLICK HERE), here are two color palettes featuring just five of the beautiful colors in these sunrise photos.

I just love finding beauty in nature and wondering how to incorporate it into a new quilt. I took these photos years ago from my back deck.

Image of Colorful Sunrise

How do you choose colors? There are so many options these days for quilters – it can be hard to find time to brainstorm your own ideas if you want to make all the great ideas, kits, and colorways already on the market! Actually, I think that’s what makes quilting such a creative market – there’s something for everyone, every occasion, and time limitation…and…the sky’s the limit!

There are so many more colors in these photos than the five I pulled out, but you get the idea…inspiration is all around us – we just have to look!

Monochromatic by Nature

If you didn’t see it, check out Monochromatic by Nature, inspired by a few sea shells.

Don’t forget your quilter friends at Christmas time! Treat them to a “Use BOTH Sides” pattern and they’ll never look at one side of fabric again! Click HERE to SHOP!

Creative Bee Studios has free shipping for any orders over $35! Cyber Monday and EVERY day!

Image of Red Truck Quilt
“Merry” Quilt Pattern is made with BOTH sides of one focus fabric!

Margie’s Sew Much Fun

This week’s shout-out is to Margie, owner of Margie’s Sew Much Fun!

Located in the Florida panhandle, in Crestview, Margie has been serving her community since 1971.

Offering over 3500 bolts of fabulous fabric (awesome patterns, too – #usebothsides) and both Bernina and Janome machines, you can be sure Margie will show you a fun time!

Margie is a “repeat customer” of #usebothsides patterns and she is a delight to work with. You can tell from the name of her quilt shop and our delightful phone conversations, I can just tell she’s got a fun shop YOU really need to visit!

So take a trip to Margie’s or visit her website at www.margiessewmuchfun.com

Tell her Karla sent you!

Have a GREAT week and enjoy your quilting journey, Karla

Image of Quilt
Sally Quilt Pattern – available at Margie’s OR HERE

South Dakota Quilt Shop

When our daughter landed her first job out of college, we had no idea that her new adventure would become one for us, too. I especially didn’t expect it to influence the quilt patterns I’d design!

(If you wonder why I said FIRST job…she’s a musical theatre actor – there is always (ideally) a new job in this line of work!)

Because she’d landed the lead role and we’d never been to South Dakota before, we took a road trip last summer. Of course, along the way we stopped at quilt shops. That’s how I met the owner of the Quilt Shop in Chamberlain, SD. It was just on our list and close to the highway! See South Dakota Quilts & More and OKLAHOMA Backroads in South Dakota .

OKLAHOMA! at the Black Hills Playhouse

The owner, Sonya, and I brainstormed pattern ideas for her clientele and soon I was designing bison and other wildlife patterns. She carries LOTS of fun fabric with beautiful reverses!

This summer our daughter landed Sophie in Mamma Mia and off we went again! If you get a chance, stop in Chamberlain, SD – its simply loaded with fabric and has wonderful local art and craft as well.

Sophie and Donna in Mamma Mia at the Black Hills Playhouse, Custer, SD

We were able to visit again and drop off some new designs.

Image of Buffalo Moon Quilt
Aria

Here’s a big shout-out to Sonja in Chamberlain…and many thanks!

Shop Etsy for all my patterns and focus fabric kits!

Introducing Merle’s Bouquet!

My fun, sweet, adventuresome neighbor travels from time to time. When she’s away, I walk over to her house and water her flowers using her vintage watering can.

When the editor at AQ Magazine asked me for a new quilt design using BOTH sides of a floral fabric, I went straight to Merle’s house to sketch out her watering can!

So here she is…Merle’s Bouquet!

Do to the long time between designing a quilt pattern and the publication date, it seemed the day would never arrive. When I got a call from friend Nancy to look in my mailbox, I knew it was time! It was fun for Merle and I to open the issue together.

Image of magazine cover

Here is the original quilt as it appears in the magazine.

Image of Quilt
Merle’s Bouquet by Karla Kiefner, Creative Bee Studios

This is a version using another focus fabric, making it look completely different! It’s pictured here with Merle’s can.

Image of Quilt and Watering Can

The RJR fabric has a vivid, painted look with a variety of flowers and birds to add to your quilt. The focus fabric and magazine are available HERE.

Image of Quilt and Magazine
Image of Quilt and Fabric
RJR Digiprint Arcadia “Secret Garden” Focus Fabric for Merle’s Bouquet

Thanks for following my blog! Visit my Etsy Shop for more than 28 patterns plus fabrics and Use BOTH Sides!

Tying Up Loose Threads

Many months ago I had the honor of presenting my program to a great (and enthusiastic) group of quilters – the Loose Threads Quilt Guild of St. Peters, Missouri. They had a fantastic turnout for the guild meeting and we had a lot of fun!

Image of Quilters
Image of Guild Selfie
Image of Quilters Guild
(selfies are not my forte)

That night was a debut of Lil’ Susie, which 15 people received free with purchase (plus another 12 the next day in class).

Image of Lil' Susie Pattern

Take a peek at just a few of their “Grace” class projects in progress:

Notice how the focus fabric makes all the difference? Each one has it’s own personality.

Image of Class Project

In classes, in addition to making a cute little quilt top, the quilters’ play with their fabrics, learning the nuances of value and how it relates to both sides of the focus fabric and what’s surrounding it.

(I had to get her matching machine and bouquet!)

Once their fabrics are chosen, it’s all about building their bouquets!

Now, take a look at this creative gal – who just happens to be the gal who inspired me many, many years ago to join my local quilt guild. Vickie brought an old window pane to build her “Grace” bouquet!

Image of Quilter Working

Isn’t she fabulous?

Image of Quilt in Window
Notice how Vickie added a crocheted doily, a vintage hankie, and lace to her bouquet? She adapted her background fabrics to fit her window and then built her bouquet! So fun! (Sew fun!)

A happy shout-out to the Loose Threads Quilt Guild – Hope to see you lovely quilters again soon!

Image of Grace Quilt Pattern
Grace Quilt Pattern

Summer Books & Quilts

My words are inadequate to describe the essence of this book. I can’t even try. All I can say is READ it. You won’t be disappointed:

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

A Reese’s Book Club selection.

Image of Book

This may be my shortest blog post ever, because I am still at a loss for words, more than 24 hours after finishing Kya’s story. I hadn’t planned on sharing the quilt shown below yet, but I need to – I guess it’s my feeble attempt to thank Delia Owens for the insight into a habitat I knew nothing about while enjoying a fantastic and enlightening book.

This guy was hanging around me at sunrise on Pensacola Beach. I found the feather focus fabric later that day at A & E (Pharmacy) Fabrics. The light on his face and throat and the borders are the reverse of the focus fabric – #usebothsides

Image of Crane on Beach
Image of Quilt of Crane

Thanks to my dear friend, Kim, I’m calling him Lord Stanley.

What book are you reading? Let us all know in the comments!

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Shop Creative Bee Studios Etsy Shop HERE for all the #usebothsides patterns!

Quilt Week Faves

There’s simply no way to take pics of all the fabulous quilts at Quilt Week, because 99.9% of them are just THAT! Here are just a few that made me stop, take out my phone and grab a shot. Hope you like them, too!

Oje De Dios by Mary W. Kerr, quilted by Candace West was featured with Mary’s whole series at the Rotary. She takes pieces of old quilts, blocks, or parts of quilts and incorporates them into new works with a modern flare. She gave each quilter freedom to do whatever they wanted for the quilting.

Below is Homespun, quilted by Donna Ferrill James. The wonky star was made from a worn quilt with lots of various designs in it. Mary was able to salvage parts by hand-piecing the star points. She used other workable parts as part of the backing.

Below is Fan Flower, quilted by Vicki Maloney. She purchased three fan blocks at an antiques shop and Vicki worked her magic using those three blocks!

See Mary W. Kerr’s work and get her book Twisted HERE.

I like how Mary combined the old with the new, not just the fabrics, but the design and the quilting techniques, too. I have a book somewhere that shows how to combine hand and machine quilting – maybe I’ll give that a look and see where it takes me.

Quilt show aren’t just about prizes, ribbons, and vendors (whaaat?), are they? It’s about inspiration, aspirations, goals, achievements, sparks, and happiness.

Watch for more quilt week pics to come! Meanwhile, enjoy your quilting journey!

Popular Vintage Machine Quilt

Quickly becoming a best-seller, Aria ahr-ee-uh is a quilt pattern for any feather-weight or other vintage machine lover!

Arias evolved from simple melodies in the 14th century and became a means to tell a story in a more emotional way, allowing a musicians (and later, vocalists) to display their talent. Arias are mostly associated with opera today.

Image of Quilt Hanging Outsides

So why call this pattern an Aria? Take a look at her…she’s definitely a singer!

I haven’t always known what an aria was and, had my oldest daughter not studied opera, I might still be in the dark. But here she is, four years ago, as a senior at Eastman School of Music, singing “Emily’s Aria” from the opera, Our Town by Ned Rorem.

Click here to hear “Emily’s Aria” from Our Town by Paige Kiefner
Here I was in Rochester, NY, on an unusually warm, sunny day, binding her graduation bow-tie quilt made with a fabric line called…wait for it…Our Town!

While the traditionalist might cringe, fun things are happening with these featherweight machines. Tables and inserts, custom carry cases, and bright new paint jobs are indicators that these little work-horses will be around awhile.

As I mentioned HERE, I’d love to someday own a colorful featherweight, so making a Tula Pink quilt version seemed the thing to do!

Image of Pink Sewing Machine

#usebothsides of one focus fabric for the machine, binding, bunting (reverse), and scissors and thimble (both reverse). Choose fun, scrappy background fabrics and accent strips – all the while learning the nuances of value! (Click here for more about value.)

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

Queen’s Palace Quilt

This quilt began with a fat quarter bundle from one fabric line. Using the “Hex and More” ruler and 2 1/2″ strips, I made lots of half-hexies and proceded to lay them out to consider my options.

Image of Queen's Palace Quilt

My goal was to create a blended quilt version (see Blended Quilts book) of the classic Grandmother’s Flower Garden. I tried many combinations but the look really came together when I started to use the reverse side of the fabrics for the outer flower rings.

Each black center and first ring are the front of the fabric. I could have excluded the lightest (white) fabric to make the changes in value more apparent, but again, I was trying for a more subtle approach.

Do you #usebothsides ? Tell me how!

Image of Quilt Pattern

Shop #usebothsides patterns HERE in my Etsy Shop: Creative Bee Studios

Image of Bee Quilt
Phoebee Quilt Pattern

Search #usebothsides on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest to see more quilts made using both sides of fabric – see the process in action in classroom pics!

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