Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Window On My Quilt Retreat

Hello quilters.  This is Jill from Jillily Studio.  I am happy to join you here on Stash Manicure again. 
I just got home from my family quilt retreat last night.  Four days of laughing, sewing, sharing, eating, and very little sleep.  We do this every year, and it was even the subject of my last book, Stitched Together.  Twenty Eight of us met at a cabin from all over the country to spend this weekend together.   Here's a glimpse of the mess we made.  (And the fun we had!)
You can see more about the retreat on my blog in the coming days.  (I still need to unpack and get organized, but I will be posting more soon.)  So I am home just in time to post this for you.  Since it is fresh in my mind from retreat, I am going to share a project we did together.  My sister Susan made the sample, a pillow made with cathedral windows blocks.  Isn't it so cute?
Now I know that there are several ways to make a cathedral window block, and usually they are stitched by hand, but we did ours by machine and I am going to describe the method we used. 
Here goes. 
We'll make the window panes first.  On Susan's pillow above, the window panes are in the green fabric.  In the following photos, I used a different fabric (which happens to be the one she used for the "stained glass" so don't get confused.)

First, cut nine 14.5" squares from your window pane fabric.  Cut a template from poster board 13" square.  Center the template on the wrong side of your fabric square.  Use a hot steam iron to press the corners up over the template, and each long edge as well.

 Remove the template.
 Fold the square in half with the wrong sides together.  Press.
Fold in half again making a square, press.

 Now open the square back up and use the pressed quarter lines as a guide to fold each corner in to meet in the middle.  Press.
 Again fold the corners in to meet in the middle, making a smaller square. 

Fold and press all nine of your fabric squares that way.  (Stack them up so you can enjoy how cute they are together.  I added this step because that is about all I got done!) 

Take two of the prep-ed squares and put them next to each other with the folded side up.  Unfold one folded flap from each square and align the creases.  Pin these squares together along that crease.
 Sew right along the crease line.  (I am pointing to it.)  Backstitch at the beginning and ending of your seam. 
 Sew three folded squares together like that to make a row, then sew the rows together.  Now all your squares are attached, but the folded triangles remain free. 

 Now we will add the "stained glass" to the window panes.  Cut twenty four 4.25" squares.  You can pin them loosely in place, but I used Appli-Glue to baste them to the window panes.  In the following photo, I left some off so you can see where to place them on the panes.  The stained glass squares will hang off the edge on the outside windows.  We will trim those later.
 Just a drop of glue on each edge and in each corner.

 Now you will roll the "window frame" over the "stained glass" and pin in place.  The thickest part of the "frame" is in the middle creating an oval opening between windows.  Put a pin in the center of the roll to hold it while you sew.  We sewed ours by machine through all the layers.  Follow the curve of the window pane, stitching right along the edge.  Begin and end with a knot or backstitch.  Continue to stitch each side of the window frame until the "stained glass" is completely enclosed. 
Stitch each window frame around the "glass."  The windows on the edges will have only two stitched sides.  When all the windows are completed, trim off the extra "glass" fabric on the edges. 

(Note that I have no pictures showing the next few steps, because that is as far as I got!  My machine is still in the car, so you will have to trust me on this.)

Measure your pillow top and cut a pillow back the same size. Place the pillow front and back right sides together and stitch around leaving an opening to stuff.  Turn out to the right sides.  You can use a pillow form or loose stuffing.  Fill your pillow and hand stitch the opening closed.  Add buttons for embellishment if you want.
My daughter-in-law Erin did a smaller version.  Here is her finished block:
Wow, that is so cute!  Erin made hers with different "glass" in each block.  They are the same fabrics she used to make the large project we did at retreat.  Just for fun, here is a peek at her quilt top that matches the pillow.
Won't that pillow be so darling on the bed dressed in this sweet quilt? 
Another sister, Judy made her cathedral window pillow out of silks.  It is absolutely beautiful.  I will post a photo of it on my blog as soon as I get one.  If you use silk, make sure you use a lightweight fusible interfacing to make the silks easier to handle.

I would like to give away a prize to a few lucky readers of this post.  I will randomly choose a few winners to send a copy of my book, Stitched Together, my Appli-Glue, and my newest notion, Poke-A-Dots
Make a comment here and sign up to "follow" on my blog.  If you haven't heard of Poke-A-Dots, they just came out and will be showing up in quilt shops soon.  They are a sticky little thimble dot that you stick to your pushing finger for hand sewing, like bindings and buttons, etc.  Learn more about them here. 
(If you don't happen to be a winner, you can purchase all of these items on my website, along with all of my patterns and kits.)

I hope you have a fun time making a cathedral window pillow, or maybe even a whole quilt!
Happy Quilting-- I hope to see you on my blog!
Jill

125 comments:

  1. These are so cute and I think I can actually follow those instructions. I was actually thinking the other day about cathedral windows and remembering seeing my grandmother making those little windows when I was girl. I told myself I should look up how to do those, but haven't yet. Now, low and behold, here they are showing up for me. LOL Thanks! I already subscribe to your blog through my Google Reader.

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  2. Jill, thanks so much for the maching Cathedral Window tute. Cathedral Window is one of my favorite blocks! Now, I can make them faster, easier! Your "letters" line of fabric is my favorite of all your lines to date! yep, yep, yep...

    hugZ,
    annie
    rubyslipperz106.blogspot.com

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  3. I'd love to try a cathedral window pillow! Thanks for the inspiration. :) I'm also a follower of your blog.

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  4. I've wanted to try a Cathedral Window...now I just may go for it. Thanks. I am on the lookout for your Poke-a-dots. Haven't found them yet but I will!

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  5. Wow, I can't believe you have 28 people in your family circle to go on a quilting retreat together. That is awesome. Thanks for the inspiration to get back into cathedral windows.

    Debra

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  6. It looks like you had an amazing time. Can I please be adopted? I love your blog also.

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  7. One of these days I'd like to try the Cathedral Windows--it doesn't look that difficult (at least when you do it!) As I'm typing this, my sore fingers are urging me to find out more about your Poke-a-Dots. Are they just for the top hand--or can they be used on the underhand for hand applique (two of my underfingers are all poke-d to bits)? They look like a neat invention!

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  8. Thank you for the Cathedral Windows tutorial. I think I could actually do it! I went to your blog to become a "follower" and saw the lovely purse Janice had made in your fabrics. Beautiful! The photos of your retreat reminded me that its time to schedule another retreat for my sisters and me (5 of us altogether). They don't all quilt but we do have scrapbooking and ice-cream-eating in common!

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  9. I've only ever made small Cathedral Windows and it took me ages to get it big enough for a cushion cover, now I'm tempted to try your way so I can get a bigger result fast. Your Poke-a-Dots sound great, I'm not very good with a thimble and something like this would probably be a help.

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  10. What a neat post! Looking forward for more post from you. Thank you for sharing!

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  11. Great post - love catherdral windows!

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  12. My next project will be a cathedral window. Thank you so much for this tutorial!

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  13. Thank you for sharing your tutorial Jill, you make it look so easy. I've tried the handsewn way but gave up after a few blocks. Would love to try your machine sewn method. What a wonderful retreat - wow, how do you manage to get 28 quilting family members together!

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  14. I am a follower of your blog and I so want some of those poke a dots, mainly for sewing binding on. I keep looking at the tuts for cathedral windows...I really must have a go at them. Thanks for a chance to win.

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  15. I can't quite visualise the stage where you 'roll the window frame' ... but I'll go look it up elsewhere! I love the effect and yours is beautiful :)

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  16. How fantastic to have family to sew with, you must really look forward to the retreat. I love to have weekends away, with friends just stitching, laughing and meals provided. I agree with you very little sleeping goes on. A great tutorial!

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  17. Cathedral Windows are so beautiful but I never knew how to make them - but now I do. Thanks for the tutorial.
    I'm a follower of your blog.

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  18. I love Cathedral Window projects. I haven't tried making anything yet but I do love looking at what other people make.

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  19. I am a new follower for you now Jill! I love your work and I would love to have your books!

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  20. Your family quilt retreat sounds just lovely... may I be adopted?

    I am a follower of your blog. Thanks for the give-away!

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  21. Jill I am one of seven sisters and we get together once a year for a ten day sewing retreat. What a blast we have. Our daughters, granddaughters and inlaws also come. I'd love to have a chance in winning your book. Thanks! ~Polly~

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  22. Thank you for the wonderful tutorial! I am going to give it a try. I follow your blog already and thank you for the lovely giveaway!
    butler83ataoldotcom

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  23. Beautiful pillows, thanks for the tutorial! Wish my family was quilting..... Im a follower of your blog

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  24. Looks like you retreat was a success. I LOVE retreats! Thanks somuch for the tutorial, I think I can do this.

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  25. Occasionally my daughter and her friends come for a girl's day away (they all have little ones) and raid my stash or bring their own - and we sew, eat, and laugh. It usually is to help get Christmas gifts finished. I've done the cathedral window, pockets joined by machine, but the little window curves I like to do by hand. I am already a follower of your blog.

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  26. I'm in love with your Elizabeth's Letters line...it is so nice to know that the letters printed on the fabric are from your mother...wonderful! Your family retreat remembrance booklets, necklace and envelope are so nice - what a great job! I love the cathedral windows 'machine' tutorial you placed here and I'm going to purchase your new book! Thank you for sharing!

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  27. That's a neat way to do this block. Thank you Jill! Sounds like a wonderful weekend.

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  28. Thanks for sharing this neat project. I am already following you.

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  29. Your retreat sounds great ~ I would love to win the book ~ I just ordered Poke-a-Dots ~ and now I am a follower (-:

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  30. Your tutorial is great, I might even try a pillow. Thank you for sharing, now I'm headed over to your blog....

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  31. Good Morning Jill, how nice to see you through my windows...ok, your windows. Your fabric choices are really very pretty. Another guest appearance that has not gone without a terrific fan base reminding you of your lovely contribution. You truly are an artist with style and a great fabric collection...

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  32. One of these days I will finally get to do a cathedral window. This is the way I will do it. Thanks for the tut. Will be over to your blog soon to look around and follow, I can already tell that I love what you do. Oh and you will find adoption papers in the mail soon. Love that family retreat thing.

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  33. Thanks for the tutorial. I sew want to make a cathedral block and putting it as a pillow would be just perfect. Oh, you are so lucky to have such a large family and to have sew many of them that enjoy quilting. I am envious. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  34. Looks like you had a great time on retreat! I already follow your blog. Thanks for the giveaway!

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  35. I've always wanted to try a cathedral window quilt. This "all machine" option gives me the courage to try again.

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  36. Thanks for the tutorial - you make it look so easy!

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  37. Those pillows are awesome. Love the idea of a faster cathedral window.

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  38. I cannot wait to try this pillow, and I want to be adopted into your retreat! I will be following your blog! Thank you.

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  39. What a great tutorial - thanks! I visited your blog and have become a follower. Thanks for the opportunity to enter the giveaway!

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  40. I do so love Cathedral Windows.. they are so beautiful! I think the template at the beginning is where my directions went wrong in the past.. they didn't quite start out square, and so, things went awry.. perhaps I can try again with the square template at the get to.. and things will work out differently.. I sure would love to look at one on my bed!

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  41. thank you for your easy tutorial for cathedral window. When I do one of these I will use this method. I am a follower of yours and enjoy your posts. I would love to be entered in your giveaway!

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  42. I don't think I've ever made a Cathedral Window. Thanks for all the instructions. I'm already a follower of your blog.

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  43. Great technique to make cathedral windows, looks easy enough! Off to check out your blog

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  44. Great tutorial. I'm a new Jillily blog follower.

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  45. What an easy way to do a rather complicated design. I really admire people who figure stuff out like this. Right now I'm heavy into hexagon quilts. Maybe this will be my next passion!

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  46. Thanks for the tutorial - I've always wanted to try to make this block, but didn't want another hand sewing project.

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  47. I want to try your method. I didn't like the hand-sewing one.

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  48. I have been contemplating a cathedral window quilt for some time, and you are leading me into temptation! But, the appli-glue and poke-a-dots would be a big help on the applique project that is ahead of it in line.

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  49. Wonderful post and tutorial. You are truly blessed with an amazing family. I am a follower, thankyou.

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  50. Great tutorial. Thanks! I have been saving men's ties to put in the windows of a Cathedral window quilt, but I haven't taken the first step and started on one.

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  51. Well, that's a fine way to make the Cathedral windows and so easy too. thanks for showing us and I would love to have a copy of your book.
    Marie

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  52. Wonderful tutorial - and the pillow is very nice. I may have to try that one as I love to learn new techniques. Thanks for this awesome opportunity to win your book. Judy C

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  53. I have been following your blog for a while and Love It!!! Judy C

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  54. What a great lesson on the cathedral windows. Looks like you had a fantastic time on the retreat. It must be awesome to have that many quilters in the family. Thanks for the chance to win your book, the appli-glue, and the poke-a-dots. BTW, I signed up to follow your blog.

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  55. Thanks for the great pictures and instructions! You make a block that I would have avoided, look do-able! I would love to win your book and notions! Thanks for the chance!
    Jacque in SC
    quiltnsrep(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  56. My mother's first quilt was acathedral window quilt made from some suspect fabrics (polyester??? Yuck?) but oh so lovingly stitched together. Polyester was the fabric of the day back in the 60's and 70's so she worked with what she had. I love that quilt! I would LOVE to win your book since I am so "stitched together" with my family from all of the quilts and blankets that have been passed down thru the years!!!
    Blessings
    Gmama Jane

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  57. I love Cathedral Window blocks, but have always been too chicken to try them. This may be just the tutorial to get me started. Thanks for the clear directions.

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  58. That retreat looks like a great time. And your cathedral windows are beautiful.

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  59. Cathedral windows are so pretty. Your instructions are very clear, so I may just have to give them a try. Oh, and I already follow your blog!

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  60. I hadn't understood exactly how the Cathedral Window block was made...until now! Thanks for the super instructions. The pillows are SO cute and maybe, just maybe, I can sneak that project into the queue sooner rather than later! And, 28 family members at a retreat??? Awesome! I’m a follower now too.

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  61. Thanks for the Cathedral windows tutorial. I may have to give this a try.

    This for holding the giveaway. And, I am already a follower - really enjoy reading your blog.

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  62. Thanks for showing a method for cathedral windows that doesn't involve hand sewing. I'm off to become a follower.

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  63. The retreat sounds like a grand time!!

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  64. I want to do this with my family! We all sew (with a few exceptions who keep asking me to teach them!) Thanks for the inspiration! (I follow your blog as well!)

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  65. What fun your retreat looks to have been! The pillow looks very tempting for a try in this little ol' sewing room :) Thank you for sharing!

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  66. A family quilt retreat sounds AWESOME! I love the cathedral window blocks and now I know how to do it:) Yay!

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  67. These are beautiful, and even as a beginner look doable.....maybe! I did get a bit lost when you glue down the "pane" and then roll the edges. Aren't they under the glued down pane? Sorry, guess I will have to try it and see if I figure it out when I see it.
    And yes I would love to win your book and goodies!

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  68. about 25 yrs ago I did a Catheral Window pillow, where is that darn thing?? perhaps I will make another one now that your tut explains it so well. Thank you!

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  69. I have to say, Cathedral Windows usually make my eyes glaze over...but these instructions I actually think I could handle--thanks! Of course I would love a copy of your book, and I've already started looking at your Poke a Dots. Oh, and I already follow your blog! :)

    Dot
    dminshall67@yahoo.com

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  70. A family retreat is a dream of a project! Loved your easy to follow photos for making Cathedral Window.

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  71. I love the cathedral windows. I am going to have to make some. Thanks for the give a way. I am a new follower to your blog

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  72. What a great tutorial! I've been wanting to make something with cathedral windows and a pillow is the perfect thing. You make it look very doable.

    How fabulous that you have so many family members into quilting. And a retreat too! I'm trying hard not to be so envious.

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  73. I have wanted to try the Cathedral Window for years and I think I just have to give it a go with this method. Can't wait to check out the Poke a Dots!

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  74. I just signed up to follow your blog and it was really hard to leave and come back here. Very nice and interesting blog!

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  75. The cathedral windows pillow is beautiful. Thanks for sharing. I'm a follower of your blog and love all your designs.

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  76. my sisters and i (5 of us) get together once a year but we eat and play card, may take a while to convince them we could quilt. love your blog, thanks for sharing.

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  77. great tutorial, I have been thinking about taking on this pattern in scrappy. Might just have to start cutting a pile of background, i can get that far at least- right?

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  78. Thank you for the tutorial!
    I really want to try it they look so beautiful :)

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  79. It has been over 30 since I made a Cathedral window pillow - think it's time to do it again!

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  80. I'm already a follower
    I hope I win your book ;)

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  81. Love the Cathedral Windows pillow - great tutorial! I am a follower of your blog. o:)

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  82. Thank you for the tutorial on Cathedral Windows. I want to try that. I am now a follower on your blog.

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  83. I am a follower of your blog. That is the best cathedral window tutuorial I have ever read. Just might try one now. Thanks

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  84. I'm a new follower. I found you via Stash Manicure. Thanks for the great tutorial.

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  85. I will have to try that version of Cathedral Window. I already follow your blog. Thanks for the give-a-way!

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  86. Thanks for reminding me about another UFO I have! I've been doing it with handstitching, but now I want to try a machine-stitched one. Love the tutorial, now I'm off to follow your blog. Thanks for the opportunity, Terri in BC

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  87. I love quilting retreats and I can't imagine them being any more fabulous than with 28 family members! Wow. How amazing (and wonderful) that all of these women you are related to are quilters.
    Thanks for sharing the cathedral windows method. This is the 3rd different method I've seen now. I must try it!

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  88. Your tutorial makes Cathedral Windows look like it is doable. Maybe, just maybe, I'll actually attempt a pillow.

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  89. What a neat way to make cathedral windows and the best part I actually got it. thanks
    hadacres at comcast.net

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  90. So pretty!! I absolutely love this block and will have to give it a try. You make it look easy. ;) Thanks Jill!

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  91. Twenty-eight is an impressive number of family member to get together to quilt.
    What a fun time you all must have had.
    Great tutorial for cathedral windows make it look simple.
    Hugs,
    Gerry
    on my to check out your blog and Follow

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  92. I have always wanted to make a Cathedral Window, I now think I can! By the way, I think we are cousins, so just let me know the date of the retreat and I will mark it down!

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  93. What a great tutorial. And a super give-away. I'd love to win it.

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  94. The Cathedral Windows look really great in the script material, would never have thought of using that. the tutorial's great, thanks.

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  95. Perfect timing! I need to make a few new pillows for a fresh Spring look! I already am a faithful follower of yours:) Thanks again for the great tut!

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  96. What a fantastic tutorial - I have always loved cathedral windows but stayed away because it looked so hard - just wonder question how do you roll the panes back - do you roll up or under? would love to win - anything being a 'newbie' to quilting I am lapping it all up.. Thankyou for an opportunity

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  97. Bookmarking that tute so I can try it. A pillow is just the right sized project for me to try cathedral windows. Nice way to use up some of my left over charms. :)

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  98. I have been seeing a lot of these projects in the quilt shops. They looked hard to me but after reading your tutorial I think I could manage just fine! Thanks!

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  99. The tutorial was great! I've always wanted to make a cathedral window block. This sounds like I could do it. I am already a follower.

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  100. Oh wow those are amazing, I can't wait to try out the technique. And I would love to receive the polka dots. Thank you for the opportunity.

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  101. Very cute, I would love to try them sometime soon.

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  102. The Cathedral Window is so very pretty. My mother made a small pillow of Cathedral Window all by hand, and I use it as my chair pillow. It's a beautiful pattern. Now, I'm off to visit your blog (I have visited you before)! Thanks for the chance to enter your drawing, and thanks for a great post on stashmanicure.

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  103. Cathedral windows are on my wish list of things to be done. I tried one, all by hand. I think I like your method better.
    The little dots sound wonderful. I can't tell you how many times I have pricked my finger. Mainly because I need to feel what I'm sewing, and a thimble seems to get in the way.

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  104. thanks for a great tutorial. I'm going to bookmark this one for sure!

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  105. I'm really wanting to try cathedral windows - and a pillow looks like it might be my speed. Thanks for a chance to win - Larie

    llsbaskets at comcast dot net

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  106. What a beautiful pillow! Mother's Day is coming! Thank you for the tut, you make it look easy.

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  107. Thanks for the great tutorial. I've always loved this pattern but was too lazy to make it by hand. I love how the pillows turned out.

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  108. Polka Dots sound like an answer from heaven. I can't find a thimble that fits worth a darn. It's terrible to have large hands! Mentioned on your website how I can't wait to try your Cathedral Window Block. Love your color choices. Also saw your experiment with Kool Aid. Going to talk my friend into playing with Kool Aid and see what we come up with. Take care.

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  109. Ya know, I'd like to think it is just early (barely past 6am) which is why I had to go over the photos several times. Then the coffee kicked in and my "ah HAH" moment hit. Exceptionally cool. What a great way to make cathedral windows! Easy peasy lemon squeezy. Thank a million!
    Christina in Cleveland

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  110. Your cathedral window tutorial is so much easier than the one I tried several years ago. I love cathedral window quilts and would like to give your method a try. The snails trail quilt is gorgeous too.

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  111. You make the cathedral window look do-able. And love your basket quilts. I am now a follower of your blog, and think I am falling in love with Civil War fabric. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  112. What an awesome tutorial! Thank you!!

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  113. I just love the cathedral window pillow. I am in the process of getting my fabric ready for this project. Now I have an even better tutorial to use for this project. I was going to try and use the appli-glue and now I know it will work. I just love your fabric and I may just have to make a pillow to match my quilt that I am making out of this fabric.

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  114. Seems like such a blast at the retreat. Love the cathedral window pillow and it is definitely sometime I have to try later on. Thanks!

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  115. I am already a follower of your blog and have made a few of your patterns. The instructions for the cathedral window are great - I'm off to try it now :-)

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  116. Thanks for the cathedral window instructions---you make it look easy.
    I love all you do---thanks for sharing!

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  117. I am now a follower of your blog. And I also like your instructions for the cathedral windows... it might take me a moment to get them but I might try them one day... I saw someone making a hexagon cathedral window and I may try that one day too.

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  118. Loved your post here. I'm a happy follower of your blog. Thanks for the fun!

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  119. I loved your post on how to make a cathedral window. I enjoy always hearing about the family quilt retreat. It is amazing the things that are made. I am already a follower of your blog and enjoy it.

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  120. Love your Cathedral window technique! Thanks for the great giveaway.

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  121. Great post! I would love to win your book. I follow your blog!

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  122. I just signed up to follow your blog. :) I loved your instructions on the Cathedral windows. I've always wondered how to do that!

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  123. Thanks for the tutorial on the cathedral windows. You made it look easier than I thought. I am on my way to your blog to become a follower.

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  124. Barbara G. ArkansasMay 26, 2011 at 8:48 PM

    Gosh when can I come and join in on the fun! :o) I love the cathedral window tutorial and can't wait to try it out.

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