Creative Bee Studios

Sweet Ideas for Creative Minds - #usebothsides

Category: Technique (page 1 of 4)

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.

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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

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!

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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!

Phoebee Goes to Market!

I’ve wondered for a few years what it would be like to collaborate with a fabric company. I never dreamed it would be this fun!

On August 3, at 3:47 p.m., I opened two packages of 21 fabrics  from Hoffman California Fabrics company. Image of Fabric

For the next six hours, I auditioned 42 fabrics (both sides of each) trying to get just the right mix of color, contrast, values, and feel that would be worthy of this new line by Hoffman California Fabrics.

Phoebee is the pattern and Electric Garden is the fabric line. Of course, I took tons of pictures,  mostly black and white, and still this was a challenge…and a gamble! Not seeing the reverse of a fabric before-hand made me a little nervous – some fabrics just don’t have usable reverse sides. Image of Black and White Quilt Photo

Well, Electric Garden rocks! Vibrant color with a soft, contrasting reverse side was just the recipe I needed. I flipped several backgrounds to their reverse as well, so they wouldn’t compete with the bee or flowers. The next step was cutting out Phoebee and her flowers.Image of Quilt in Frame

I slept on this mix so I could get a fresh look the next morning. Yes! I began fusing and quilting (on my Handiquilter Avante) right away. Next came the prairie point hanging method, binding, label, photos, writing and producing the pattern, and Phoebee was flying to California on Tuesday, August 7th!Image of Quilt on ClotheslineImage of Phoebee QuiltImage of Quilt Pattern

Image of Back of Quilt My new friend in California let me know Phoebee arrived safely! Now for the waiting game…

Quilt Market in Houston was November 3 – 5. I was fortunate that several kind quilter souls saw Phoebee hanging in the Hoffman California Fabric booth and shared their pics with me on Instagram! Thank you, friends! Image of Phoebee at Quilt MarketImage of Electric Garden

This morning I am shipping Phoebee 2.0 patterns to a very fun quilt shop in (wait for it) Canada!

Original Phoebee and Phoebee 2.0 quilt patterns are available in my Etsy Shop HERE.

Image of Bee Quilt

Phoebee Quilt Pattern

Wholesale application HERE.

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Enjoy your quilting journey!

New-Prairie Points for Hanging Quilts

Fold a few squares, make a few stitches…here are some tips to make the Prairie Point Hanging Method your favorite way to hang small quilts!

For sizes and to review the complete method, see Hang Quilts Using Prairie Points  and Prairie Point Hanging Method

Image of quilt with words: Press. Pin. Stitch.

*Cut the right size and number of squares for your quilt size and hanging rod. (Even numbers are best so you can hang your quilts from a single point.)

*Press well.

*Stitch the raw edges prior to attaching them to your quilt using a regular stitch. (Basting seems to scoot my top layer forward.)

*Press again.

*Quickly trim uneven edges using a sharp scissor or rotary/ruler.

*Pin well.

*Use a strong doubled thread for stitching points to quilt.

*NEW: When using Prairie Points as a hanging method for unusually large rods (such as used in a show), add some looseness into your points as follows: When your binding is turned and you are ready to stitch the points down, do this for each point – fold the point across the top of the quilt at the binding. Lay a ruler on top of the prairie point, at the top edge of the quilt. Fold the point back down over the ruler. Pin or hold the point in place and stitch. This will give some added room for a large rod to be run through the points without causing tugging or distortion on the quilt.

I like to use up scraps for my prairie points. Try using the reverse side to tone them down or provide interest on the back of your quilt! #usebothsides

Image of Back of Quilt

See the front of this quilt and new pattern in the next post!

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Jacq O’Lantern Quilt Makes a Happy Boo!

Jacq O’Lantern has a happy little ghoul popping right out her top like a jack-in-the-box! The first mini #usebothsides quilt pattern, Jacq O’Lantern is too much fun to make!

She’s a pint-size lesson about value but when you make her, you’ve learned the easy tricks for using value to make any of the patterns using both sides of one focus fabric! Image of Quilt on Hanger

I was never real big on halloween decorations. I preferred to use that money to buy more Christmas lights and decorations. We didn’t avoid Halloween with our kids, but we also didn’t make a big fuss about it. So…why is it I LOVE Halloween fabric so much?

As a kid I only had a couple of drawings I liked to do – over and over. One was a beach scene with a palm tree (are you surprised?). The other was a witch on a broomstick.–she always had a long chin that jutted out and a big ole wart on her nose. Maybe these Halloween fabrics take me back to my childhood or something. Several of my favorite quilts and projects are Halloween themed. I’m sure you seen them before but, well, ’tis the season!

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Black Kitty Punch Needle

Image of Instant Bargello Quilt

Instant Bargello Quilt

Image of Halloween Quilt

If you like Halloween fabrics like I do, chances are you have everything you need in your stash to make this little gal. So grab your stash – and turn it over! #usebothsides

Our youngest daughter’s name is Jacquelyn. We’ve always had nicknames for her such as

Jacq

Jacq Jacq

Da Jacqinator  (at the age of two she could “destroy” a room in minutes)

Jacqqity Jacq (don’t talk back)

and, among others,

Jacq O’Lantern.

Jacq O’Lantern Quilt Pattern makes a mini (a mere 12″ square) to hang perfectly on wire hanger.

See Jacq O’Lantern and all her friends HERE in my Etsy shop, Creative Bee Studios! 

 

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Quilt Fusible-in a Pinch

I first fell in love with light-weight fusible when I applied Mistyfuse to fabric for use with shaped rulers.

That’s how I made this quilt.

Image of Quilt at Beach

Water Colours

I love that it is like a weightless “spiderweb” of glue. It is so soft, your machine won’t even know it is there. However, there is no paper on this fusible and that caused serious limitations for my use of it. I do a lot of fusible applique which require tracing a template.

My favorite paper-backed fusible is SoftFuse because it is lightweight like Mistyfuse. I recommend Softfuse for students making #usebothsides patterns (click here to see patterns)

So when I heard about this method of transferring a design to fabric with Mistyfuse, I wanted to check it out. Here’s what I learned…

First draw or trace your design with lead pencil onto parchment paper. You need to make it dark. I used a #2 lead pencil.

Then cut a piece of Mistyfuse large enough to cover your design. Using a protective sheet (I used a Goddess Sheet), press the Mistyfuse to the wrong side of your fabric. The Goddess Sheet give the Mistyfuse a sheen so you can see where it is on your fabric.Image of Bee TracingImage of Goddess Sheet Packaging

Mistyfuse on FabricLet it cool and then lay the fabric, fusible side up, on a hard surface. Lay your parchment paper, design side down, on your fabric and trace the design with a hard pointed object. I used a stylist tool. I peeked to make sure the design was showing before I moved the tracing.

Cut your design on the lines.

What I learned…

Don’t trace onto the right side of your fabric. I had to redo my bee after I made that mistake.

The lead markings transfer much easier onto the Mistyfuse than they do directly onto fabric.  The finer your pencil, the finer your lines. I over-did my lead tracing because I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to see it. I could actually use a finer point and get a more precise drawing than I anticipated.

When you need an alternative to paper-backed fusible, this is a great option!Image of Fabric Bee

Image of Deer Mount Quilt

Jack Quilt Pattern

Got a favorite cabin or lodge to decorate? Here is Jack (buck)! He’s made with both sides of Mossy Oak fabric on a scrappy background. Click HERE for the #usebothsides pattern.

 

Quilting-Dakota Style

This little guy just made the trip, along with his buddy, Tanka, to two of my favorite places in South Dakota!Image of Turtle Quilt

My daughter’s work at Black Hills Playhouse finished up for the summer so my husband flew out to drive back with her. So, being the great guy that he is, he offered to take my two newest quilts and a stack of patterns with him.

First he went to visit our new friends Kathy and Ernie in Custer SD, at Dakota Dream Bed & Breakfast & Horse Hotel.  We highly recommend a visit to the Black Hills in Custer State Park and a stay with Kathy and Ernie. Learn more HERE.Image of Dakota Dream

Then when Matt and Jacq were homebound, they stopped in The Quilt Shop, Inc. in Chamberlain, SD.  They delivered “Dakota” patterns to owner, Sonya Kroupa (and pick up a piece of fabric for moi)! Sonya has a delightful quilt shop AND more! In addition to rooms and rooms of interesting and different fabric, kits, and patterns, she has local artwork, jewelry, beads – really more than I had time to take in during my two short visits there. Visit The Quilt Shop website HERE.Image of The Quilt Shop, Inc.

Also, see this post which shows more fun things to see in Custer and the Dignity statue in Chamberlain HERE.

About Dakota:

This is another petite design, finishing at 18 x 24 inches. It’s a great “afternoon quilt” – quick and easy. Even after making more than twenty #usebothsides quilts, I can’t decide which is more fun, choosing the focus fabric or the background fabrics. Both are vital to the charm of the quilts!

The southwest focus fabric was an awesome piece to use. I loved the rich mix of background fabrics, including several feather fabrics. Image of Turtle Quilt
Imagine all the different “turtle “fabrics you could use!  It could be playful with children’s motifs, realistic with mottled dotty fabric, wild with large florals or geometrics – really anything will work as long as the reverse passed the audition!

Read about Tanka quilt pattern HERE!Image of Bison Quilt Closeup

Wild West Quilts

Thinking caps, please…

South Dakota, wildlife everywhere, incredible terrain, bison strolling along the roadside, animal skulls…this isn’t some cutesy butterfly pattern I’m introducing…in fact, it took this Southeast Missouri girl some time to wrap her head around it…

…but with the right fabrics – WOW! I’m diggin’ this bison skull quilt pattern. I hope you are, too!Image of Bison Skull Quilt

As many of you know from “South Dakota Quilts & More” (click here), our recent trip to the Black Hills Playhouse in Custer State Park included some fun sights, statues, monuments and, of course, quilt shops.

Tanka is the first pattern in what I call my “Out West” series.

Tanka, in Lakota, means “big, great”.

I chose feathers on a light background for the focus fabric. The skull is made from the reverse side of it and the hanging feather decoration is cut from the front. The background fabrics for this quilt were really fun to play with! Don’t you just love that black and white fence row fabric at the bottom? I found it and “several” other fabulous fabrics at The Quilt Shop in Chamberlain, SD.Image of Bison Quilt Closeup

A fun element of making these quilts is mixing up the background fabrics. This one has batik, southwest, gold circles on gray (but reversed), grunge and a fur look to really give interest to the quilt.

It’s so much fun to #usebothsides of fabrics and it’s a great way to learn about the nuances of value. You won’t look at fabric the same way again! AND when you use both sides, you DOUBLE your stash! Give it a try!

If you like the wildlife theme, hang on! There’s some really fun ones in the thinker and on the design wall!

Shop HERE for #usebothsides patterns.

Don’t forget about Jack (buck), made with Mossy Oak camouflage fabric!

Choose the River Heritage Block-of-the-Month Mystery Quilt page for the latest block. Only one to go!

Can you guess what the next #usebothsides pattern will be?

 

Meet Jack-the Deer Quilt

It’s a boy! Jack is the first boy made with both sides of one focus fabric.

I used a Mossy Oak camouflage from my local quilt shop. There are LOTS of camouflage fabrics on the market you could use.

I thought this one a might stiff when I pulled it off the bolt but after a quick wash and dry, it was great to work with!

As I describe in all the #usebothsides patterns, you’ll want to see a good contrast in values (black and white pictures tell the truth) when you choose your focus fabric.

*Full-size paper template.

*Complete, detailed instructions.

*Fast and easy to make.

*Guide for auditioning and choosing your focus and background fabrics.

*Learn the nuances of value while you have fun auditioning both sides of fabric!

Shop Jack and all the #usebothsides patterns HERE!

With fall just around the corner, you might want to get your ghoul on with Something’s Brewing!

Meet Sandy, the Sea Turtle Quilt

Sandy, the sea turtle pattern is for those who love summer at the beach… the sand, the salty air, the sound of sea gulls and crashing waves and, of course, sea turtles!  Image of Sea Turtle Quilt by Water

In the warm summer sand, a momma sea turtle digs her nest. This becomes home for up to a hundred eggs for the next sixty days. Like the temperature of the sand determines the gender of the sea turtles, your focus fabric will decide yours! Image of Sandy Pattern

Did you know? Cooler sand temperatures produce more male and warmer sand produces more female sea turtles.

The sea turtle eggs hatch almost simultaneously, making the sandy nest look like boiling water. Instinctively, the babies find their way to the water with the help of the slope of the beach and the moon and star reflections on the water.

The large number of turtles hatching and moving to the sea all together helps protect them from predators. That’s why its a good idea to remove chairs and umbrellas and fill all holes at night during hatching season so they have a better chance at making it to sea safely.

How it works: Value. Choose a focus fabric with a great reverse. (You’ll know it when you see it, you really will!) Make sure you can see the difference in value by taking a black and white picture. Tips for auditioning focus and background fabric are included in each #usebothsides pattern.

Full-size paper template included in each pattern.

Shop for Sandy on www.etsy.com/shop/CreativeBeeStudios

Image of Sea Turtle Quilt on Clothesline Prairie Point Hanging Method instructions included.

Shop all my patterns HERE

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