A peek at some machine and hand quilting

Do you remember the Polka Pots quilt that I made for my granddaughter for Christmas?  I gave it to my friend Lisa to quilt for me.  Lisa is a longarm quilter and does a fantastic job!  I got the quilt back last night, and I’m in LOVE with the quilting that she did!  I told her to do whatever she felt it needed.  I didn’t want it too heavily quilted, so that it would be soft.  Sometimes when you quilt something a lot it looks beautiful but is more stiff.  This is supposed to be a cuddly quilt for a little girl.  It still needs me to put the binding on (which I love doing), but here is a sneak peek:

This is a little peek at the back…

Polka Pots 006

A peek at the front…

A close-up of a block…

And on my Spools quilt I started hand quilting the tan border with Baptist fans…

Hand quilting is perfect while watching the Detroit Tigers and the New York Yankees play ball.

Goooooo, Tigers!

Quilting Gallery Contest


The Quilting Gallery is having their “Quilt of the Week” contest.  This week’s theme is “Flying Geese.”  My quilt (Ocean Waves) has Flying Geese in the border.

 Check out the contest and vote for your favorite!

Art of the Barista

The Michigan Quilt Artists Invitational 2011 is now in the Greater Flint Art’s Council gallery in Flint, Michigan, to begin touring for the next year.  I managed to make it to the gallery after work on Thursday and take some photos. I’d love to show you more, but I won’t show other people’s work until I get permission from the curator of the exhibit.  For now, here’s my entry, called

Art of the Barista




If you get a chance to see the exhibit as it tours the state of Michigan, please take the time to enjoy the artists’ work.  Lots of great ideas in this show!

What is an applique’ quilt?

An applique quilt is constructed totally differently than a patchwork quilt.  With a patchwork (or pieced) quilt, different pieces of fabric are stitched together at the edges, and the more pieces you put together, the larger the quilt becomes.  You are, in essence, creating the cloth top of the quilt one little piece at a time.

An applique quilt is somewhat more fussy to make.  With applique, you start with a background fabric. Then, following patterns you have purchased or designed yourself, separate designs are cut out of another piece of fabric (normally colored fabric); those pieces are then appliqued or sewn on to the top of the background fabric.  An applique quilt can be a two-color quilt, as in the blue and orange photo you see below, or it may be constructed of many different fabrics in many different colors.

The following are all examples of applique:


You can also combine patchwork (piecing) and applique in the same quilt, as seen here in “Floral Star of Bethlehem.”


What is a "patchwork quilt?"

There are many different kinds of quilts, and the term “patchwork quilt” is an old name for quilts which are pieced or “patched” together.  In the United States during pioneer times, the main purpose of making a quilt was to provide warmth for someone.  Quilts were often made by taking pieces of old clothing, scraps of fabric from aprons, old blankets and whatever fabric you could find.  The maker used what they had, cutting around worn areas and keeping those parts of the fabric that still had some life left in them.  These pieces of fabric that were still good were trimmed to a certain shape (square, rectangle, triangle, etc.) and then pieced together with other shapes to produce a piece of cloth that was a mixture of “patches” held together by stitching. 

An artistic person would often assemble all the scraps they could find and carefully create a pattern of the colors, rather than simply sew the bits of cloth randomly and quickly, paying no attention to design. 

The following are examples of some very basic, simple patchwork quilts.  Any of these patterns would be good for a beginning quilter!


Tomorrow we’ll take a look at applique’ quilts!

Flushing Historical Society Quilt Show April 30, 2011

I love a good quilt show, and I really like old quilts.  So I was thrilled to visit the Flushing Historical Society’s quilt show this morning.  The Society owns the old Flushing Depot in downtown Flushing, and quilts were hanging throughout the entire building.

Virginia Anderson was present at the show explaining the details on various quilts, and showing the quilts collected and made by Mary Schafer.  The way the exhibit was set up made it difficult to get photos of each quilt in its entirety, so I did the best I could.  Here are some that grabbed my eye.

 4302011 039

4302011 044

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4302011 062

4302011 061


4302011 060

I was excited to see my quilt hanging in the exhibit!  The Flushing Sesquicentennial Quilt was made as a fundraiser for Riverbank Park’s walkway in 1984.  Designed from old photographs of Flushing, it includes the old mill, Depot, old Flushing High School, the original fire station and more.  People paid to have their signature placed on the quilt to raise money for the brick walkway.

I Need Some Sunshine

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It’s no secret that I live in Michigan, and this winter has been unusually cold and snowy. In fact, February 2011 is reported to have set a record for snow totals. I am ready for some sunshine!

We have a place in our hallway for a quilt to hang. Several years ago, we purchased a curtain rod which the Woodworker hung up for me. I rotate quilts as the urge hits me, and yesterday I decided I needed some sunshine in the hall. So this quilt came down…


as it was too dreary for spring, and this quilt was hung up (after I put a hanging sleeve on the back).

The quilt is called “French Star” and it is hand appliqued and pieced, and hand quilted. The center of the block is stipple quilted (all by hand) and I really enjoyed the stippling process. The stippling really makes the open stitched design pop out, almost like trapunto (see picture below).
I have to find some other things I can do to SPRING UP the house.


You can click on the photos to enlarge them and see more detail.

What do you do to bring the warmth inside?