05. March 2015 · Comments Off on Quilt Journal: My Momma’s Birthday Quilt · Categories: quilts · Tags: ,


Eventually, all my immediate family will have a quilt that I made for them. So far, my brothers Jared and Ian and, most recently, my mom have received quilts as birthday gifts from me.  I’ve got ideas for Dad’s quilt and for Carl’s quilt, but I haven’t started on them. Their birthdays are in the fall, so maybe in 2015… maybe.

I knew that I wanted to make a quilt from my friend Elizabeth Dackson‘s book, Becoming a Confident Quilter, and the Precious Stones quilt was one (of many) patterns in the book that appealed to me.








I modified the piecing a bit. I added more white squares to break up the white sections and make it a little more maze-like.

The most important part: Mom loves it! I made it for her birthday, which is at the end of December, but I didn’t actually finish it until January.  This totally worked out, though, because my husband had a business trip to San Antonio in early February, so I packed it in his suitcase. He hand delivered it to Mom for me. :) Hand delivery is always better than USPS. And because her birthday had come and gone a long while before delivery, she was totally surprised. Score!


Quilt Stats:

62 x 74″

Fabrics: Various Madrona Road prints, Navy gingham, Kona Gold, Kona Snow

Warm and Natural 100% Cotton Batting

Gray Minky Backing

Quilted with loopy flowers all over, with a wishbone pattern in the border.

Machine bound.

28. May 2014 · Comments Off on Drop Dead Gorgeous · Categories: paper piecing, pattern review, quilts · Tags: , , , , ,


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My friend, Elizabeth Dackson, is a super talented quilt designer, and I was thrilled when she asked me to test her newest pattern called the Drop Dead Gorgeous block. It’s not for the faint of heart, since there are several paper piecing templates, but it certainly wasn’t difficult, just time consuming. Time spent sewing is time well spent if you ask me, and the results are simply breathtaking!

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I turned my block, which finishes at 16 inches, into a 20″ pillow by adding a border using some 2.5″ strips of black kona cotton. I quilted using my walking foot, and then backed my pillow case with white minky dot fabric and stuffed and stitched it up.


I do plan to use this pattern for another project. One block just isn’t enough! The secondary patterns that emerge when joining more blocks together are just amazing. Check out Elizabeth’s blog post about this block for more Drop Dead Gorgeous eye candy and to purchase the pattern.


I’m thinking about trying it out in nothing but solids. I’ve never done a solids-only project… I wonder if I’m brave enough?

24. March 2014 · Comments Off on Pattern Testing: Modern Gears · Categories: pattern review, quilts · Tags: , ,

a031014_0276I am not a quilt designer. Yet.

I have ideas for quilt designs, but I haven’t taken the time to learn how to properly write a pattern that someone else can follow. It’s on my To Do list… I am so inspired by what others create, and it is fun to see how simple shapes likes rectangles, squares and triangles can be arranged to make so many interesting designs.

I recently had the opportunity to do some pattern testing for my friend, Elizabeth Dackson, of Don’t Call Me Betsy. What fun! I still need to piece a backing and quilt it, but the piecing was really straightforward, and I chain pieced most of it, so it went really quickly!

I love the way Elizabeth writes her patterns. She provides yardage and cutting instructions for multiple sizes, essentially doing all the quilt mathematics. There’s no guesswork if you decide to make a size other than the one she made. And, she even includes a coloring page so you can audition your fabric selections before you commit.aIMG_5038I went with Kona charcoal for the background, a turquoise kona (can’t remember the name of the shade, and I can’t get my hands on a color card right now…), an absolutely luscious gray cross weave, an orange mini gingham from Michael Miller and the purple is Newsprint stripe, part of the Collage collection.  I also used some purple ombre dots by Riley Blake and some scraps of a green dot print.

a030514_0279I’m not usually a fan of pressing seams open, but I like how nice and flat the blocks are with the seams pressed open. I admit, I still pressed the seams of my hst’s to one side.  Old habits die hard, I guess!

aIMG_5098I love turquoise and orange together. Such bright, happy colors!

a030514_0280Honestly, the purple was a real stretch for me. I am usually sewing for boys, to pink and purple are not even on the radar! But, this quilt, when it’s finished, will be mine. I’m the only girl in the house, and it has purple.  Therefore, it is mine. YES!

a031014_0270My only regret with this quilt is that I didn’t make it bigger! I just might make 4 more blocks to extend the quilt a bit before I quilt and bind.  We’ll see.

It’s a great pattern, Elizabeth! Thanks for letting me test it for you!