It’s a GIVEAWAY at Michigan Quilts!

I asked, you told what you wanted, and I listened.  Here it is!


Quilts, Coverlets, Rugs and Samplers by Robert Bishop
“Bag ‘o Fun”– a large ziplock bag full of precut 3 inch squares, just itching to be put into a quilt!

Here’s what you need to do to get your name in the drawing:

  1. Leave a comment below telling something you know about the great State of Michigan.  A little trivia never hurt anybody!
  2. Tell what state YOU are from (sorry, only United States entries will be accepted).
  3. Add yourself as a Follower to Michigan Quilts! It’s at the very bottom of the page.  Keep scrollin’!   If you are already a follower, let me know that in your comment
  4. Mention the giveaway on your own blog.
  5. In order for you to win, I must be able to see your blog AND you must have your email on your profile or on your blog so I can contact you.

The drawing will take place on July 4th!  You can remember that date, right? 
Let the entries begin!!!

What do you want to know about quilting? ASK!

Questions No matter who you are or how long you’ve been quilting… we all have questions.  On or around the 10th of each month, Michigan Quilts! will have a question and answer session called
You post a question in the comment section… Other people will chime in and respond. 
Your questions might be about fabric:  “How many yards do I need to buy for a backing for a queen size quilt?”
They might be about thread:  “I’m hand quilting and don’t know what kind of thread to use that won’t tangle.”
They might be about batting:  “What kind of batting is easiest for hand quilting?  For machine quilting?”
They might be about needles: “What needles do you use for applique?”
The possibilities are endless! 
Go ahead… ASK us something!

Becoming a Rockstar Quilter


I refuse to purchase a quilt kit. 



America's Pictorial QuiltsWhen I wrote my first quilt book back in the early 1980’s, my editor at the American Quilter’s Society asked me to include some patterns in the book.  I said no then.  America’s Pictorial Quilts features individual quilts made by individual quilters.   No two quilts are alike, and you’d be hard pressed to find a duplicate anywhere that is exactly the same.

I believe in individuality.  One of the reasons I enjoy quilting so much is that there are thousands and thousands of colors and patterns of fabric available to choose from.  You don’t look like me (for which you should be grateful).  Your house doesn’t look like mine.  Why should your quilt look like mine?

I understand that there are patterns available for quilts.  I have drafted patterns myself, and offer patterns free on this site for the Block of the Month Calendar project.  But you will never, I repeat, NEVER see me offer a pattern AND the exact same fabric to make a clone like mine.  I don’t believe in clones.

When you go to a quilt show, look around at the BEST quilts you see.  They are usually not clones.  They were designed by a quilter, sewed by the quilter, and painstakingly worked on to create the beautiful item you see hanging before you.  Chances are, that quilter has made many quilts before that are just as unique, and will continue to make unique quilts after this one is taken home and tucked away.

We are amazed at the phenomenal quilts by Caryl Bryer Fallert.  Why doesn’t she have quilt kits for her work?   Because it takes away that which makes her work uniquely hers.  And why would we WANT a quilt kit for anything she has made?  In my opinion, the clone is never as good as the original.  If I bought a kit and made a clone, it would be a pathetic attempt at best.  I’d rather drool over Caryl’s work and own a book that features her quilts than try and replicate one myself!

I remember when I went to my senior prom, I was upset because my mom had made my dress.  Nobody I knew had their mom make their dress, and it embarrassed me.  Not that mom wasn’t a good seamstress, because she was, and the dress was beautiful. But it was home-made.  Several gals had on identical dresses in the same color from the same store, and they all looked alike.  They were angry that someone had worn THEIR dress!  I didn’t have that worry.  Nobody had a dress like mine!  I was unique! 

I encourage you to keep creating quilts that nobody else has made.  Take a traditional pattern if you wish, but do something cool and jazzy with it that puts YOUR spin on it.  Or make up a pattern of your own and run with it.  Do something different!  Do something YOU!

I realize that kits are made for people who might not otherwise make a quilt on their own.  I know they serve a purpose.  But I don’t have to like them.

How do you feel about quilt kits?  Have you ever made a quilt from a kit?  Did you like it?

Chime in with your two cents.   Leave a comment below, or send me a direct message on Twitter.twitter

Michigan Quilts! Comment Policy

Why does a quilt blog need a policy on comments? Geesh!

Michigan Quilts! Loves it when readers leave comments. It lets me know that what is put on the website is actually being looked at by human eyes. The pictures are seen, the words are (hopefully) read or skimmed over. Most of the comments that are left here are good and greatly appreciated.

So what can you do with the comment section on this blog? More than you can on some other blogs.

Here are some things you can include:

  • Responses to an article that agree or disagree intellectually. If you like a quilt, tell WHY. Say more than just “very pretty.” Tell WHY you think it’s pretty.
  • If you read an article in Michigan Quilts! that shows a technique and you have a different technique that you like, it’s okay to share, just don’t make us look stupid.  Please.  With sugar on top.
  • If you like something and leave a comment, can you tell someone else? Share the article with a friend, or forward a link to a new quilter.
  • If you read the blog and like it, tell us, then click on the FOLLOW button so you can come back for more.
  • If you want to share a link with the Michigan Quilts! readers, feel free! (Some blogs object, but I don’t.) Just be polite and don’t self-promote and spam yourself all over the Internet via this blog. Once in a great while is fine. Just be kind. elf

What you can’t do in the comment section:

  • Go off topic. If an article is about Amish quilts, don’t tell us about a great knitting pattern you just published on your own site for $19.95.  That will get you a wedgie.   A big one. 
  • Be rude. Don’t be rude on Michigan Quilts! If you’re rude, I’ll send my evil elf to your house to unorganize your stash big time! Threads will be cut. Bleach will be used. Rotary cutters will have their blades bent. It won’t be pretty.
  • Post racist or obscene comments.  Come on, people… be kind.
  • Violate trademarks, copyrights or intellectual property rights in your comments.  I have sued for copyright infringement before.  I know how it’s done. 

What you do that ticks us off:

  • Leave comments with no possible way for us to send you a splendidly nice email saying thank you. Before you leave comments, please make sure that you have enabled your email address so that we may reach you.

A Quilt for Multiple Sclerosis

I work for a specialty pharmacy in Mid-Michigan and had an opportunity to help raise money for Multiple Sclerosis by making a quilt block representing our company (top right corner).  The block is our company logo.  The quilt is now “on tour” around the country, and I just received this photo of it in its finished glory.  Love the colors! is a Mayan incensario that I appliqued and embroidered last winter.  It is now part of a FINISHED quilt called “2013: Mayan Tree of Life Lives.”  Wish I could show it to you, but the exhibit isn’t until September, and I can’t show the whole thing until then.  

The Michigan Quilt Artist Invitational exhibit opens September 10, 2010 in Flint, Michigan.  
Mark your calendars – hope to see you there!

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Sometimes it’s so hard…

Making something and waiting to give it to the recipient… and not wanting to let the cat out of the bag lest the surprise get ruined.

This time next Saturday… I can show you.

Not until then.  And it’s driving me CRAZY waiting!

DSC03520 Our little bunny… waiting in the grass

July Block of the Month


Who doesn’t like to go to the beach in July?  And watch a sunset?

Going to the beach in the summer is one of my favorite things to do.  Whether it is a lake, ocean or even a river, water has always stolen my heart in summer. 

This is a simple block to make.  The sun is paper pieced, the letters are fused… though you could needle turn applique’ them if you choose.  JulySun

I chose to do simple quilting, very close together, in horizontal squiggly lines.   I chose an orange for the quilting on the top portion of the block, and blue for the bottom.  I love how it turned out!  J.U.L.Y


Hint:  If you trace the lines on the paper piecing sheet with pencil, you can leave the paper right in when you quilt.  It gives it a crisp finish, and nobody will know they are there.  This is likely not to be washed, and even if it does, it won’t hurt anything.  I never do that with a quilt, but often do on small wallhangings and get good results.

The pattern is located here.