Monday, February 7, 2011

Colour Impact Quilt

Hi! I'm Jane from Sew Create It and I'm thrilled that Madame Samm has asked me to guest post on Stash Manicure again.  Stash Manicure is such a great blog that shares so many ideas on how to manage your stash and I hope the idea I have for you today will do just that.

There are lots of great blocks that allow you to use up all those strings and crumbs that are in your scrap bin, but my favourite is the Chaos Crumb block.  I first saw the idea of chaos crumb blocks on Patti’s blog back in 2007 and it is by far my most favourite way to use up the little scraps that are too odd or too small to be used in a more traditional way. I’ve made these blocks multicoloured in the past, but my preferred method is to group them by colour.  Here is a pattern for a quilt using these blocks which I think has a rather modern take on the traditional scrap quilt.

This quilt finishes at 44” x47” but could easily be made bigger by adding more blocks and/or more rows.

Cutting instructions:
42 - scrap chaos crumb blocks squared up to 6”. 

If you plan on using bans of colour then each row uses 7 chaos blocks.

Using a fabric that reads as a solid cut
6 - 6” squares
7 - 2½” by 44½” strips

Assembly is really straight forward.
Sew the chaos crumb blocks into rows.
7 blocks to each row.
Then sew a plain 6” square to the end of each row.
Sew the 2½” by 44½” strips between each row.
Remember to rotate each row as you go so your solid squares alternate down the quilt.
Here is a link to a printer-friendly-version of these instructions.

Incidentally if you change the background fabric you get a different effect ...check out these three versions I’ve made.

There is a lot you can do with these colour blocks...just check out Amanda Jean’s version and Caroline’s version!
Thanks again Madame Samm for the opportunity to always it’s been great fun to share with your readers!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

It's Sunday...Ready, Camera, Action...REST!

 It is Sunday... I know..what is this? Remember me saying our Sundays were going to change..this is the change.... We will  be resting, I know personally  I will be.....Putting up a video takes me ahhhh 2 secs lol...
Sew let's keep our Sundays, just that--- one of REST....

I have been listening, and trust me, we all need a day of rest, but many of you still come by on Sunday's and were looking for more guests ( our guests need rest too) .Well, I have good news...Every other Sunday, Missouri Quilt company, Natalie and Sarah have agreed to supply us with videos for beginnings, intermediate and advanced sewers... ( ps. their videos are not live lol....they are resting on their Sundays too) 

The other Sundays,  Lee from Accuquilt has agreed to supply us with videos on how you use a GO Cutter.
(soon we will be giving a Baby Go away..stay tuned for that) 

As we branch out into embroidery- experts  will be coming forward, designers and quilters alike..our Sundays, will now be filled with something for each and everyone of you...

A very big thank you and appreciation to Natalie, Sarah and Lee, for believing in Sew We Quilt @ Stash Manicure to embrace us all with open arms....

I am me I am ....ok, I am trying too...

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Will your quilt be found in a pile known as UNKNOWN MAKER?

This is my first time posting here and I heartily thank Madame Samm for the invitation! This blog has been a great source of information (and entertainment) for me and I hope that my entry will continue the tradition.

I have never been very good at introducing myself. . .even though I have taught quilting and crochet classes for more than 12 years through various Community Education programs here in New Jersey.

To begin, I am a first generation quilter --- no history of quilting on either side of the family tree (but my maternal grandmother was a seamstress and had made me many items of clothing as I was growing up).

Oh, I guess you would like to know who I am. . . LOL. . .see, I told you I'm not good at introducing myself!!

I'm Sherry and I blog at Books, Hooks, Sticks, etc. My blog is about alot of things, not just quilting.

Since taking my first class (more than 20 years ago) I have continued to take classes through local shops as well as attending many yearly quilt shows & conventions (I attended every year of the Quilters' Heritage Celebration in Lancaster, PA). I feel that we never can learn everything. . . other than that one CAN have too many UFO's!!

In quilting terms UFO stands for UnFinished Object, another meaning could be Unidentified Flying Object (but that is for another blog). . .but I would like to offer yet another meaning --- UnFamiliar Object.

You are probably asking yourself, "What is this woman talking about?" Well, I'm glad you asked.

Down through the ages quilts have been used as blankets, fund raising tools, memory boards (pre-computer!), and cures for a bit of homesickness. They have been loved, sold, bartered, tattered, worn out, repurposed, and on and on and on.

A good many quilts have ended up in museums. . .and alot of them have information cards that start out "Unknown Maker". . . .but the person that made that quilt wasn't "unknown" were they?

Which brings me to my topic (thought I'd never get there, didn't you!! LOL) -- labeling your quilt.

It is important to label your quilts so that a portion of your history can be preserved and passed down to future generations. Those who are active geneologists have been known to travel far and wide in order to track down their family roots. By putting a label on your quilts you are giving future family members the trail to trace themselves back to you.

Doesn't that sound exciting?! Thinking that 50, 100 or even further in the future you could be the subject of major "Google" searching to find out what made you unique can be quite exhilarating.

Ok, I know, once the binding is on you really want to move on to the next project (unless you have been working on others at the same time). . .but it only takes a moment and can be so helpful.

The pictures that I have interspersed here are labels that I made as a hostess gift for a quilter with whom I will be staying shortly.

All of them (except for the one below) were drawn by me (the label with the purple flowers was traced from a labelling book). The one below is a rubber stamped piece.

When doing a label the most important information to include is: Your name (put in your maiden name as well as your married name), the city/town and state where you live, and the date.

If you are making the quilt as a gift that information could be provided as well. And, if you know it (and want to admit it), putting the start date of your quilt could be very enlightening to those that may view your quilts.

Those of you that do machine quilting could always quilt your name into your quilts, or you could embroider the information onto the quilt.

A separate label is not always needed. . . .if you are using a light fabric on the back of your quilt you could write directly on your quilt backing. Actually, doing this before quilting helps to deter quilt theft because in order to remove the identification on the quilt the quilt would be damaged.

Below is a picture of some of the pens that I use when making my labels. Most of them are Pigma Micron pens (05 size) but there is a large purple pen that I had used to make quick work of a play quilt ... the tip is quite large.

Ok, so how do you do a label?

The first thing is to decide how large you would like your label to be. I have made labels as small as a 2 1/2" half square triangle and as large as 4" x 5".

Once you decide on the size of your label you need to cut out the fabric you plan on using for your label. Of course, if you are writing directly on the back of your quilt you can skip this step. When cutting your label fabric be sure to have your cut be at least 1/2" bigger so that you have room to fold over the seam allowance.

Then you need to make a guideline. I use freezer paper as both the guide and stabilizer of my label fabric. Cut the freezer paper larger than your label fabric.

To mark your guideline on the freezer paper you can use pen, pencil, etc. --- the idea is to have a line that you can see through your paper and your fabric.

This is important. . . make your line on the DULL side of the freezer paper so that you don't run the risk of transferring the line to your label.

Then take your label fabric and freezer paper to your pressing surface. Put the SHINY side of the paper on the back side of your fabric and press. . .no steam (aka dry iron) is all that is needed. . .and it is just a quick pass to adhere them together. As you can see from the photo. . .the line can easily be seen through the fabric.

I chose to use a circle as a guideline and just started to doodle using my imagination to make up designs:

This last picture is how you can write out the information on the center of your label . . . yes, that is my handwriting!

There are many books available that have designs for labels that you can trace -- some are geared toward specific holidays and some are just generic but they are great to use as "starting points" to get your creative juices flowing.

I hope that this information was helpful. . .and I'd love to see what kind of labels you design.

here are a couple  labels for you..!
copy and enlarge  to whatever size will suit you..

label # 2 

In peace & pieces,


Friday, February 4, 2011

A trunk show and tutorial from Lena...

Hi, I'm so happy to be here at Stash Manicure for the
very first time! I'm Lena Karen from LeKaQuilt,
and I love to make quilts.
Here is some of my quilts and an tutorial - how to make
a small purse..

This is the Love Letter i made 2010,
pattern from the Blackbird Design.

Dancing bears.

Mug Rug, fabrics from Sweetwater

Pink Mug Rug.

Mug Rug fabric Iced Mocha from Buggy Barn.

And I had to made some X-mas Mug Rug........

Here are two greate tip:

1) Use your sewing glove even when you sew smal pieces.
Try, and you will know why...... :o)

2) Always start and stop sewing with an smal pice off fabric (scrap).

The first few stiches can be swallowed into the machine's throat plate,
sins there are little fabric for the machine's feed dogs to grab onto.

And as an bonus, you save thread from your bobbin.

Sweet small purse tutorial:

This is the presser foot I use when I'm sewing
the zipper unto the purse.
Phaff nr 3 or the Bernina nr 5.

3 - 2,5 x 10 inch strips for the front.
1 - 7,5 x 11 inch Backing
1 - 7,5 x 11 inch Batting
2 - 1 1/4 x 7,5 inch strips for Binding
1 - 7,5 inch Zipper

Sew together the three strips.

Make an sandwich and
quilt as desire.

Use an plate to cut an nice curve at both side and trim.

At both side sew the binding with your needle position
two-tree step at the left.

Press the binding like this........

Change the presser foot, this is the nr. 5 - Bernina.
And sew the zipper on at both sides.

Remember to move your needle position.

Cut of the binding behind the Zipper.

Make an sesecond seam at the binding......

...... make sure that the second seam meet the zipper
at the wrong side :o)

You can now close the zipper.

Sew the sides togheter, first the 1/4 seam allowance
and then zic zac edge like this:

Now its time to make Box corner......

Remember to count in the seam allowance.

......and cut.......
Sew an 1/4 inch seam allowance and zic zac edge like this:

And......... Vola!!

Now back  to the quilt show:
The Nanny Sharon Quilt, made in 2010.

String quilt from 2009.
(I love this quilt)

String quilt made 2010.


My first quilt witch was quilted by machine.

Wall quilt pattern from Quilt Blocks Galore!

Hand appliqué and hand quilted, pattern from
American Pathwork and Quilting - my favorite magazine.

Log Cabin Bear, hand appliqué and hand quilted.

Tablecloth hand appliquè and hand quilted.

Quilt made in 2009.

Old tablecloth with appliqué.

Jacob's Ladder, made in 2010.

Where to find great patterns for free?
Take a look at these sites:

Thanks so much for having me Madame Samm, I
feel very honored to write here.
Hugs LeKa :o)

* editors note..Lena 1st language is not English
( it is Norwegian)
and I think she did a marvelous job here..
I raise my cup to you my dear...
thank you !