Autumn Jubilee 2018

If you have been reading my blog for at least a year, you know that I enjoy all things “Autumn Jubilee” by Carole Carter of the blog From My Carolina Home .  This year Carole has a list of sponsors that include the Fat Quarter Shop, Aurifil Threads and many more.  Hop over to her blog, and see what she is talking about, and be sure to follow!  You can win STUFF too!  Carole has a wide array of things she posts about (yes, there is more to life than quilting…..go figure).  She will share recipes, tablescapes, have some type of sew along, talk about fall decorating and much more. So, please, go take a look.  Enter the contests to win stuff~!!!~  And be sure to comment and tell her I sent you to visit.  I am super excited about all the opportunities to win cool stuff, but even more excited about what patterns she had created for us to stitch!

ps….if you make any of the projects from the blog, be sure to share photo’s on her Facebook group!


Autumn Jubilee Quilt Along with Carole


Like I NEED another project…………..but I just can’t resist a “scrappy project”.   Yesterday morning, Carole – From My Carolina Home on WordPress posted her Autumn Jubilee Quilt Along .   Of course,  I was hooked as soon as I read her blog post!  If you comment on her blog post you might win a prize!  Carole has Aurifil Thread as a sponsor!

I went out to my sewing room over the garage, and I diverted my time from Mittens!  ( I swore I wasn’t going to let anything interrupt me…..)

I pulled out the bins from the cabinet that hold my “scrap storage system” .  (Thanks Bonnie Hunter  and Joan Ford ); collected some already cut 3″ and 2.5″ squares in the Autumn colors.  I even had the neutrals, already cut, in those sizes.

(note – Bonnie and Joan have similar approaches; both have books and blogs.  My system is a combination of both, which I have previously written about.  Links at the bottom of the post to both Bonnie & Joan, and my previous post about scrap storage.)

I laid out a block; dug in my scrap baskets (sorted by color) for pieces to use for the stems, and got busy.  While I was digging in the scrap basket, I pulled some other pieces that could be cut into squares and starched, ironed and cut them too.

Autumn Jubilee block

I got these blocks together before dinner.  They all need squared up to 6″.    

**Carole just sent me a note –  the blocks finish as 6 inches, at this stage you square them to 6-1/2 inches to allow seam allowance.

Leaf blocks for Autumn Jubilee

I went “back out to the garage” after dinner. (The dishwasher was running and I left dishes in the sink, but hey, I was on a mission and dinner really interrupts my flow……)

I decided I wanted more blocks.  Carole said –  “If you want to make all the projects in the quilt along, you’ll need 24. “

So, I got busy!   Since I pretty much pulled out of my scrap storage box all of the colors, I dug into the scrap bags for the oranges, golds and browns.  I did a little more starching, pressing and cutting.  While I was at it, I cut some other sizes to go into my scrap storage boxes; things that were too small for this project, like 1.5 & 2″ strips and squares. (I always cut the biggest size I want first, in this case 3″, then I cut the remaining into the next usable size).

I built a few more stems, sewed some more half square triangles (HST)  and looked at the clock. It was nearly 10:30 pm.  ( I swear I was only going out for half an hour!)  Time flies when you are having fun!  I brought my small cutting mat and trimming tools into the house with me and will do a little squaring up of the HST’s this morning.

HST for Autumn Jubilee Quiltalong

I think these will give a bit more variety to the leaves.  I might have to dig in my boxes again for greens for another round……. I really don’t know how many I will get made.  At least another 6.

I don’t know what the project will turn into.  That is part of the fun of the Quilt Along that Carole does.  Next block won’t come out until next Friday, and I am leaving for Texas at the crack of dawn the next morning, but I will at least have a start. It will be nearly Halloween when I get home, and I won’t be able to keep up, but I will follow along while I am away.   I think these alone will make cute place mats or a nice fall table runner (which I need), or 4 together for a table topper.  I will have to “wait and see” for now.

What are you working on?


Bonnie Hunter – Scrap Users System –

Joan Ford  –

My scrap storage posts –

Linking up today – Show off Saturday



My little Blue Bird

Well, I promised photos and update on my workshop with Pat Sloan. I failed to take many photos during the class, but I would like to share with you my project from Tuesday.

The class on Tuesday, taught by Pat Sloan,  was Easy Machine Applique with the Blanket Stitch and it was definitely heavy on the technique. Pat covered everything from brands of fusibles, using full vs cutaway, types of blanket stitches, prepping the design for applique, types of threads, and maneuvering our stitches around curves, points, 90 degree angles, and circles. We did lots of practice stitching on sampler pieces that I posted photo’s of earlier.

Quilters by the Sea Guild of Ocean Pines Maryland hosted the class and I was happy to get a spot.  What a great facility they have available to use!  We each had an 8 foot table and they lunch was included in the fee we paid for the class.  I would definitely take the opportunity to visit them again for a class.  There were 4 members of Ocean Waves Quilt Guild, Lewes DE at the classs.

Now, with my background up on the design wall and some of the shapes for the “My Little Blue Bird” pattern drawn out, I was inspired last evening to get more done!  I was motivated to continue getting the shapes drawn out on the Heat n Bond Lite, and onto the fabrics!  The pattern and design is by Pat Sloan, and is called Little Blue Bird.  Go and check out all the amazing things you can find on Pat’s website  . Follower her blog, enjoy her patterns, radio pod-casts, facebook page etc.  (The groupie in me is showing….but really….check her website)

My background prepared and some of the designs ready to fuse to the fabric

My background prepared and some of the designs ready to fuse to the fabric

The process worked well for me.  I did the pattern tracing on to the heat n bond while we watched the debates, and did some preliminary cutting out of the shapes last evening.  This morning after breakfast, while the news folks analyzed the debates, I sat and did more cutting.  Then this afternoon I selected my fabrics for the applique.  Only 2 pieces came out of the stash. The rest from the scrap bag that my friends have been so kind to provide.  Every thing in the basic pattern is fused on, and now it is time to start the blanket stitching.

Center panel fused

Center panel fused

Blue bird! Up Close!

Blue bird!

Thought a close up of that cute little blue bird was in order!  I tried to use tonal fabrics or batiks as the background of the panel was a bit busy with print.  The green is a tone on tone, and so is the big red berry.  The little red berries have a print as does the flower.  It has a gold print over it, and so do the feet of the little blue bird.

I think I will do one more “practice round” before I begin on the project.  The pattern calls for 2 more borders and a finish size of 40×40.  Pat Sloan recommended we do our center section stitching before we add those borders so we have “less” bulk under the arm of the machine.  Let me tell you, that those kind of tips were happening all day in her class!!

I have to be honest, I thought that I would find the task of tracing, cutting, trimming, cutting etc tedious, but in fact, it was VERY relaxing.  I enjoy listening to an audio book  from the library while I sew, and today it is the fiery book INVISIBLE, by James Patterson.  My list of books that I have enjoyed listening to while I stitch is on the Goodreads list on my sidebar.

I will share some links with photos from Monday on my next post! Time to sew.

Iron Caddy tote

I admire all those bloggers who put together such great tutorials!  I had a quilt bee today, and we were to bring our own projects to work on.  What to do??  Well, I had seen a tutorial on a blog (can’t remember where) with a PDF file link for making an Iron Caddy tote.  I printed out a copy a month or more ago, and decided it was time to make one.    What is it?  Oh, a carrier for your iron, plus a place to iron when you are at a retreat, sit & sew, etc.  Took me less than a day to make it….could have been faster, but it is finished!!  First of all – here is a link to the PDF pattern – Iron Caddy Tote.  Thanks Tri County Quilters!

(Could have been faster if somebody hadn’t plied me with a bottle of Leinenkugels Summer Shandy. But that’s another story..Oh those wild girls in my quilt bee)

A quick look at the pattern will give you a feel for how it looks, both open and closed.  I shopped for the “shiny silver ironing board material” and found it at Hancock Fabrics.  I had the Insulbrite on hand already, and lots of scraps of batting in a bin.  I chose  a green floral with some great animals for the main fabric, and a coordinating brown for the handles and the “flange” on my “go-to” Susies Magic Binding.  The pattern instructions have you  make a full scale copy of the pattern and then stitch through it for the quilting.  If I were to do it again, I would mark my stitching lines with a pencil. The paper was newsprint and not so easy to pull off.  I was using an older machine without a walking foot, so I lengthened the stitch, where I really should have shortened it!  After I got the paper off, I stitched again with a shorter stitch.

Notes to remember – use cotton thread, top and bobbin for the area that is going to be ironed on.  I used Aurifil in a nice brown and it doesn’t look bad on the silver pressing surface.  My first run thru stitching I had it in the bobbin.  I switched machines (I started at a friends house during our quilt bee meeting) when I got home, and stitched those “fold lines” one more time.

At home I put the Aurifil brown in the top thread, and had Superior Cashmere in the bobbin.  Since there is no heat on the “cotton side” I didn’t think the poly thread would be a problem in the bobbin.  I used the 2 layers of  cotton batting, the silver iron board fabric and the Insulbrite, so I think the poly thread will be ok on the pretty side of the project.

The only thing lacking in the directions is “how much” fabric to cut for the binding, or if there was a preferred method for putting the binding on. So, I resorted to my Susies Magic Binding Method, and added up the 4 sides of the mat and figured it out for myself. (Oh no…engaged the brain….).  I dug through the button box and found two nice brown buttons with shanks, and dug through the “elastic box” and cut some “vintage elastic from my mother-in-law’s “stash”.  Check out the price of that elastic!!  I think the buttons are vintage too.  Wonder what year that elastic is from? It was still stretchy, so why not?!!


The high price of elastic.

The high price of elastic.


ready for a full size iron

ready for a full size iron

Folded up and ready to tote, even hot

Folded up and ready to tote, even hot

close up of the fabric and binding

close up of the fabric and binding

Nice to do a project in a day; start to finish!! Now, on to the grandkids projects before my next visit!!!

Happy sewing!

My review no thanks to helper monkeys

Good morning fellow bloggers….Seems that WordPress wants to share my stats with you Via “helper monkeys”   … Well…I’m no monkey, but  I think I did a decent job a couple of days ago; writing about my projects for the last year. (Blog post was 2014 was a very busy year). (It was a photo journey of the year)

I do find the stats interesting but not as interesting as my own photo’s etc.  But, I will share a couple of things more, as I am a number cruncher.  Before I do, I want to know what are your OPINIONS on this “forced round-up” ?  Are you playing along?  I’d like to know.  I think there will be a lot of “THE SAME” in the posts if every one using WordPress acts like a Monkey and shares the post.  Facebook is doing something similar.

So; here are my stats; as I see them:

  1. this is post # 201; I get a lot of “traffic” when I publicize on Facebook and Google + .  Most traffic has been when I have done a link – up with Bonnie Hunter – aka   .
  2. Another stat — 1345 spam comments — Thanks WordPress for filtering them out!
  3. Another Stat – 155 followers through WordPress and 199 through Facebook.  Do you “publicize” you blog through other social media sites or look at other blogs on blogspot or google plus?
  4. And my final Stat – I had a busy year with Quilt guild meetings; Quilt bee gatherings; a 3 day quilt retreat at the beach; and 2 – 3 day sit & sew retreats (no overnight) with ladies from 3 sewing bees; numerous classes with the guild; 4 bus trips to quilt shows, one trip on my own with a friend to a quilt show.  Each gathering produced projects and learning opportunities; and lots of shopping on the bus trips to quilt shows. Spent a dollar or two on fabric and notions.
  5. My “best buys” of the year have been at Superior Thread during quilt shows.  I need to make my own THREAD CHART before I go on another trip, so I know what I have (Going to take my hubby’s example and make a spread sheet & keep it on the smart phone).  I like Aurifil, but I LOVE Superior Threads and I like the deals you can get at the shows.
  6. And somewhere in the midst of it all; I have organized and made a mess and re-organized; and shared my space on 2 occasions with my friends in the Material Girls Quilt bee. I might have sewn a little too.

Wishing you a happy healthy and fulfilling year in 2015;  of creativity, while you sew, knit, crochet, cook, photograph or travel, sing, work, mother, and live.  I keep thinking of a word for 2015 and I believe that word is “use”.  I am going to try to USE what I have before buying more. (Note…in my world, that means really using that scrap storage system I started & blogged about last January!)

I leave you with a photo the latest improvement in the sewing room  studio…… (Maria in Alaska reminds me that quilting is an ARTISTIC endeavor; so I will henceforth have a studio instead of a room! That is as close to be an artist as I will ever get!)

MORE POWER!  12 outlet power strip just above the desktop.

MORE POWER! 12 outlet power strip just above the desktop.


Barn Raising completed

Phew…that was a lot of work….all that wood and such………..

Kidding…..last post I let off with a peak of a couple of potential layouts for my “silk” project. Last week I posted about playing with them on the design wall.  I had 96 half square triangles  (3.5″) from our May class – Cheryl Lynch “Sewing with Silk” .

I had settled on the Barn Raising pattern.  By Wednesday afternoon it was ready to layer and quilt after trying  out some backing fabrics.  We settled (with hubby’s help) on the fabric for the border, back and binding.

I got them cut and attached, and ready to layer….  OOOPS….need to get batting A trip to Hancock Fabric was in store for the evening, and I managed to get 40% off of some nice warm and white batting.

I got it all put together and quilted by Thursday evening.  Now, I have Quilt guild on June 2 and I wanted to take it for “show & tell”, but I hated the way the thread I had used looked when it went across the blue and the magenta.  I had used a varigated seafoam green, and quilted in the ditch along all the squares. So, you know the seam ripper had to come out.  The seafoam green disappeared into the greens and pale purples…but not so much on the blue and the magenta/cranberry color.

On Friday I took a bus trip to the Quilter’s Unlimited Quilt Show in Chantilly VA, and selected some threads at the Superior Thread booth.  Saturday I spent picking out the stitches on some of my quilting. (Listened to an audio book, Simple Genius – David Baldacci while picking…)  Well….the threads I picked at the quilt show were great…at least 1 was. Since I failed to take a fabric sample with me, I ended up with a red tone, not a cranberry/magenta that I needed.  The blue I got was fabulous….you can not even see it on the finished top.  By the time I picked out all the threads that crossed the blue and magenta, I realized I could just pull from my embroidery thread rack…..and I did.

So, all the ripping out, quilting and binding were the effort this weekend. I am much happier with the end result.  I added a hanging sleeve just before I put the binding on, and actually HAND FINISHED the binding, the sleeve and my Stitching Grandma label.  So…here it is….the Barn Raising, in Silk.


Adding the label

Adding the label

All of the colors are represented in this batik

All of the colors are represented in this batik


Putting on the binding

Putting on the binding

Barn Raising in Silk  27 x 39"

Barn Raising in Silk
27 x 39″

First finish for JUNE !!! (Hey it IS June….and I spent about 4 hours today hand stitching that binding down and getting that hanging sleeve on…….)

Quilt show….spent too much money of course, but picked up some fun fat quarters. We play a game at our Quilt Bee that involves trading, and the them this month is BEACH. I had a lot of fun to pick out fabrics that fit the theme.  Also I tripped over some reproduction fabrics that will become a table runner in the near future.  And, I bought a pattern to make a quilting tool book tote for going to classes. I have all the supplies on hand except a 2 1/8″ metal ring. (Either the quilt store or the hardware store tomorrow for that!). (It will be a race with my friend Barbara to see who gets it finished first!!)

Let’s see…oh, 2 new pounce pads. One for white and one for pink.  (Somebody….me… put blue in with the white, forever making it a blue pad……). Had interesting discussion with the “Pounce” man about application and got out of there without buying any more stencils.  Got  big spools of thread from Superior (you know, buy 3 and they are ONLY $15)….and….found a product that will make applique a bit more high tech….8 1/2 x 11″ run thru your printer paper, similar to wonder-under.  Transfer your design right to the paper via the magic of your computer. (You know I will spend as much time trying to cram as many designs on a page as I would tracing them free hand.) 🙂

We saw some great quilts and these all caught my eye.  The last one is a Bonnie Hunter design. It is called Celtic Solstice and was a mystery quilt last winter. (On my “to do” list too!)  The USAF Logo is also on my list…but first I need to find the design somewhere or buy design software.  There are two that look like optical illusions, and I loved them both.  And how about those feet….that was a paper piecing challenge at one of the chapters of Quilter’s Unlimited. Too cute!

June begins with a busy week starting tomorrow with Quilt Guild meeting on Monday and a class with the Guild on Tuesday.

Our speaker will be Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr “The Luminous Quilt” lecture and trunk show. The class on Tuesday will be Snowdrift Quilt taught by Bill Kerr, and is a Graphic Curves class.  (I have not mastered curved piecing yet…..). Have my fabric chosen for that project; as well as for 2 other projects in line.  (Did you notice I skipped right over “That Shoulder Bag”pattern I downloaded from Gourmet Quilter….no, I have not forgotten…it is on my list….).    Meanwhile….the weeds in the garden grow ever taller…but the Peonies are outshining them anyway!

Happy stitching everyone!


Tshirt quilt update

Yesterday, I decided it was time to get back to work. It has been nearly a week since I worked on the t-shirt quilt.  Spent a couple of hours working on a special label to stitch on the back side, along with a couple of other special surprises for my friend.  My hubby was a huge help with the computer and figuring out how to “layer” photos on Microsoft Word. He was my tech expert, and got my label “just right”.  I printed it on fabric and last night I attached to the back of the quilt with fusing. It will get “stitched down” with the quilting, and I will come back and add some hand stitching around the edges.  Ever since I read about quilts being stolen, I have tried to stitch my quilt label down with the actual quilting.  I don’t like the way the quilting looks over my label; but nobody is getting that sucker off with any kind of ease.


Well; the quilting has gotten underway in a big way.  I played around with methods, and went for the DITCH. I have a cool foot for my Janome that has a blade riding in the ditch on the walking foot. I need more practice, but I did get it done.    At least, around the outer perimeter of the blocks. I stitched with variegated blue around all the blue sashing. Blue meets blue and blue meets brown.  Then I switched out to a light beige thread and stitched in the ditch between the brown and the actual t-shirt block.  Most of that “ditch work” I did last week and last night.  Did a little “Bonnie Hunter Quilt Cam stitching last night as I worked through the beige thread.

Wondered what to do next, and that had me stalled for a little bit.  Got a little courage today and decide YES, I can free motion quilt.  (Courage provided by Wendy Sheppherd and her threadtalk.  She does amazing work on a Bernina and if you haven’t seen her blog; go check out Ivory Spring, where she does thread-talk, and so much more!!  )

I started with grey thread…and then I switched to variegated blue.  I still have about 6 or 8 more blocks to go; getting better as I go along. Saving the dark grey and black blocks for last.  It’s not perfect, but doesn’t look too bad from across the room.  I feel like I need lots more practice.

Actually got out my marking Pencil and did a little marking for tomorrow before I stopped for the day.  Put about 4 hours into it this afternoon.  Up over 35 hours on this quilt so far.  Now, before you look; back up about 5 feet so it looks better….giggle…