Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Quilts on Cars

Hi!  Thanks for stopping by!

Fun story about this quilt.  I purchased a 12 piece Fat Quarter (Relatively Creative Ariel by Quilting Treasures) bundle from Hancocks of Paducah last spring, 2014.  I found a 13th FQ to coordinate, and cut out the pieces for the Hole in the Wall quilt by Quilt In A Day.  I sewed some of the pieces during the Rodeo last summer, where I was vending.  I took the rest and sewed it during my vacation in Colorado.  The blocks sat for a while during the winter, as I was concentrating on Christmas stuff, but eventually I got the top together, and added a 6" border from coordinating yardage I had purchased.  Then the top sat.  I actually brought it to NY at one point, thinking I could piece a backing and get it basted, but then realized I should have brought the Warm & White batting, as the natural batting would affect the white of the quilt.  So, it sat again.

Finally, knowing I would be doing a craft show to benefit the Children's Miracle Network for Geisinger Hospital, and that parents would be attending, I wanted to get this quilt done.  It's very pretty and would be perfect for a girl's bed.  So, last week, when I went on the road trip with Sue to Ladyfingers and Wooden Bridge, I picked out this sweet green wide backing fabric.  Since the top was about 88" long, and I would need the backing to be at least 90", regular 44" wide fabric would require another piece to make it long enough.  I prefer my seams going across the width of the quilt, so backing that was already at least 100"  made more sense.

 So, I got the quilt sandwiched and began working on the quilting part.  I decided to stick with Aurifil 50wt Mako cotton, in 2024, white, for the blocks, and 2423, a soft pink, for the border.  I used white in the bobbin.  Since the blocks are about 15", I wanted a design that would fill the space well.  I was inspired just before I fell asleep.

When I was little, I doodled constantly.  I'm sure some teachers noticed, but I'm more curious about what they though of my fingers always "tapping".  If the pen was not in my hand, my fingers were practicing guitar picking patterns, lol.  But back to the doodles.  I used to draw roses and flowers.  I used the idea of the rose for the quilting design.

What is fun is that each is similar, but different, just like real flowers.  Also, because the design was in one block at a time, managing the size of the quilt was fairly easy.  My Viking performed very well, and Aurifil is always wonderful to use. I quilted feathers in the outer border, and finished the quilt Saturday night.

Sunday, at the show, there was also a car show.  A man drove in with a pink and white car, and I knew the quilt matched it!  I asked him if I could use his car for the photos, so I could list the quilt in my Etsy shop, and he agreed.  The car is a 1957 Crown Victoria.  He said it's been in his family since it was purchased, new, and for a while he drove it to work.  They refurbished it, and now he shows it.  He was really sweet to allow my quilt to drape his car, but it really was a perfect match.  The car was stunning!

Here's how I did the quilting design.

First, start with a circle in the center of the block.  Then, stitch curves to resemble the center of a bud, with the petals covering each other.  Next, go around the outside, forming the opening and opened petals.  You'll need to backtrack just a bit to make it look like the petals are behind each other. Remember that flowers are not perfect, and some petals have wavy edges and points.  Have fun, get creative, and design your own quilting motif!  This makes a really cute design in each square, and I filled in the corners with what could be the leaves behind the flowers.  You can make most doodles into stitching designs.  This will be used again.  I hope you try it, and share your flowers with me. Thanks for visiting!

Oh, and be on the watch!  The Island Batik Ambassadors are planning some fun!  We're doing a blog hop to share our favorite things, and then another with the preview of the latest Island Batik fabrics!

See you soon!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Island Batik at Quilt Market

If you've been following any quilting related social media, you know that International Quilt Market is this weekend in Minneapolis, Minnesota.   Since I'm not going, yet (it's on my bucket list), I figured I would share some of the gorgeous new fabrics your favorite quilt shop owners will be seeing.

Why do I have these?  Because I'm one of the Island Batik Ambassadors, and I get samples to share.

So, get your eyes ready to feast on these stunning fabrics.

This group is called Grapevine.  It features teals, purples, golds and yellows.  The colors are rich and vibrant, and the fabrics are just wonderful.  I love the crispness and the feel of the greige goods, and they take the dyes so well.   I can't wait to play with these!  So far, I've only been looking at them, and trying to decide how they want to be put into a project.

This year, the prints include the paisley/traditional style, and the small pine tree print, among others.  I wish you could see these in person, and touch them.  You'll see why I love Island Batik fabrics.

The paisley and sunflowers will be in other colors, too, as will the animal print.  

This one is my favorite.  When I opened the box and pulled this out, I just said "OOOHhh".  It was stunning, and caught my attention right away.  The colors are just so vibrant, and that paisley speaks to my "traditional" print heart.  This is one I would buy yards of, and savor for a while before deciding what to make.  

The second collection I got is called Buttermilk.  

The colors in this are really yummy!  I'm sure that led to the name.  
 Cream and peach with swirls of dots, and a gorgeous floral with a touch of lavender. aqua, and yellow, as well as the peach and cream.

 That gorgeous paisley again!  
The pine trees, this time in pale green on cream. 
 Paisley again!  
These two were my favorite in this collection.  

So, any thoughts on what you would make?  Do you plan to ask your favorite quilt shops to carry Island Batik?  Which of these would you buy?  Let me know!  I love your replies.  
Thanks for visiting!  Enjoy the rest of the Quilt Market posts!  Hopefully, they will get your ideas flowing, and you'll end up with some gorgeous quilts and purses.  

Creative Goodness at QuiltShopGal

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

16 Dresses and a Skirt and a Man's Vest

Was that the title to the movie with Katherine Heigl?? No, the movie is 27 dresses.  This is also not for the same plot, but it does explain what I've been doing for the past few weeks.

As I mentioned in THIS post, I'm making dresses for the Quilt Dance at Lehigh Valley Charter Arts.  I'm finally done, and wanted to share some of them.  There are 16 dresses altogether, plus a vest for the male dancer, and I also made a skirt for the soloist who sings the opening of this piece.  The students love the dresses!  I'm thrilled.  I added vintage buttons to some, and other details to others.  One has red trim, so I'm calling it my "1950's Diner Waitress" dress.  I need to get a photo of the group, and that dress.  It was fun to add little touches.  

The first one is made with a grey mottled cotton.  It looks great on stage.  This one has cuffed sleeves, and vintage brass buttons, in an olive green woven polyester.  

This one is a super soft homespun fabric.  It's the kind of dress you would want to live it, it's that comfy.  Those 3 use the same pattern.

 This is another homespun plaid, and it has a very retro vibe to it.  The pattern is Simplicity.
 This is the same dress, only in solid black cotton, with gold and pearl buttons.  I think June Cleaver or Lucy Ball would have worn something like this.  I joked that the girl needed a black patent leather belt, a strand of pearls and a brooch.  She's using a belt.  And, with her beautiful black hair, she really does look very good in this.  Very '50s Hollywood.
This is the third style, only I left off the pockets.  Again, another great teal and purple homespun.  I wish I had more of this fabric.  I would love a shirt in it.

And the skirt fabric is great, too.
I hope to get more photos of the students wearing these, and the other 9 dresses.  It's been a challenge to make them, using retro patterns and trying to use fabrics and trims I had here or could purchase from Paul.  I think I did well, and the look for the theme of the dance is great.  One student said that it's the first time she has a costume that actually fits her.  I'm thrilled to have made her happy.

And I'm thrilled to have finished these dresses!  It's been an interesting process, and now I have tons of fabric scraps to cut into squares and strips for some scrappy quilts.  I have lots planned, and need to get the Accuquilt GO! cutter out and get the piles cleaned up, cut, and sorted.

Thanks for visiting!


Friday, May 1, 2015

And The Winner Is... And an Island Batik Challenge

True Random Number Generator  82Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Melissa said...
I follow fnq on fb ��
Melissa, I've sent you an email.  Thanks, everyone, so much for participating in this hop. Melissa I can't wait to see what you choose from Fabrics N Quilts.  Have fun shopping!  

For other news Island Batik has teamed up with  Superior Threads and  American Sewing Expo for a challenge - the  Chic Batik Challenge!  
Order your fabrics from Superior Threads, make a gorgeous garment, and enter by August 1, 2015.  You have a chance to win great prizes.  Find all the info HERE
I'm planning something with these gorgeous rayon batiks. I'm trying to decide on my colors.  
Should I go with  Boysenberry Jam?
Or maybe Raspberry Fusion?

Or maybe Hummingbird Punch?  
Or... I wish I could get all 3, and the black and white...  Now to pick out a garment!  I know I want a batik shirt. Maybe a skirt?? Or should I do a dress??  Ohhhh.  I can't wait to play! I hope you choose to participate, too.  

Thanks for visiting!  I'm also linking with Quilt Shop Gal's Creative GoodnessShe's also sharing her May Free Motion Quilting Challenge. So, go, and be inspired!  Have fun!Creative Goodness landscape copy

Friday, April 24, 2015

Sewing to Dance, Dancing To Sew

I do custom work.  One of my customers is Jen from The Lehigh Valley Charter School for the Arts. I've been creating or altering costumes for her for a few years.  The Dance department puts on an annual event called Quilt.  Each class has a different dance and music and costumes, and the whole thing is "patchworked" together to make a show.  I actually like the idea, and I've seen some shows. The dancers are outstanding.  Jen's dances are a combination of acrobatics and modern dance, with touches of ballroom and anything goes mixed in. Her themes are often cross-curricula.  Last year, it was based on the poem Beowulf.  The students acted as warriors and dramatized the poem, which had been studied in their English class.

This year, the students are studying the civil rights movement and Selma and Martin Luther King.  I haven't seen the dance yet, or heard the music, but I was asked to create 16 dresses that are similar to period clothes.  Jen wants to keep the fabrics darker and more dreary.  I searched through Butterick and Simplicity patterns for designs that would be similar to the period (Late 1950's, early 1960's) and work for the very physical style of dance that her students perform.  We settled on Simplicity 1459,
, Butterick 3055, B6055, Misses' Dress and Belt and Butterick 6018,
 B6018, Misses' Dress.
Keeping it to 3 designs simplifies the prep for me, as I can often layer-cut the dresses.  Some of the girls are similar in size, so that makes things a little easier.  I'm using some of the darker cotton fabrics that I sell for my friend Paul.  His shop was down the block from this school, and he's the reason I have been doing these costumes.  Using fabrics I have here helps both of us.   I'm using some homespuns and some vintage yardage, as well.

So far, I have 3 dresses done, and 2 more in progress.  I need to also make a man's vest, and find a necktie that would work for the period.

So, if you don't hear from me for a few days, I'm deep in DRESS mode!  I get them made to the point where I'll need to check fit and do alterations.  These will all have side seam zippers, so no zippers or hems have been done.  And if you want to help cut out dresses or press or stitch facings or sew a few seams, just let me know! lol.  Or just send food and chocolate, lol.   Dinner break and back to work!

Thanks for visiting!  See you soon, with more dresses done!  No quilting until these are finished!


New and Improved! Fabrics N Quilts and a Giveaway!

I am SEW excited to share this with you!  Shannon, owner of the wonderful online and Brick and Mortar store, Fabrics N Quilts worked really hard to make your shopping even easier and more fun!  I'm SEW honored to be included in this hop to celebrate!  Shannon and I met online years ago, even before she had the "real" fabric store.  We've been friends for ages! And I've seen her business grow from just an idea to a fabulous shop.  I know she's worked very hard to make her business successful, and to make your shopping experience wonderful.  Her customer service has always been wonderful, but with the new and improved website, you are in for an extra special treat!  

I know your quilting dollars are limited, and you need to get the best deals.  Shannon recently announced that now all orders get FREE SHIPPING!  Within the US, that is. (Details below).  That's one way to make sure your dollars go towards your stash!

She has weekly deals, and lots of fabrics on sale, as well as a chance to purchase Preview fabrics at a discount.  She has LOTS of designer fabric, and LOTS of blenders and SEW much more! 

When I'm looking for a particular fabric I check with Shannon.  I know if she has it, my order will be perfect.  You will have your fabric in your hands in days, not weeks like other stores. And if you have questions, she is really great about answering them.  She's helped me pick the perfect fabrics a number of times.  AND you can buy by the 1/4 yard!  Purchase what you need for your project!  

Some of the improvements in her new shop are as follows:  Shannon shares these points.
  • Shop by COLOR!!
  • Shop by 1/4 yard
  • Try your fabric choices out in a quilt block before you buy-lets you see if you like your choices in a design (items must be in your cart first)
  • FREE US shipping-all day, every day, no minimum, no limit, no coupon-NO HASSLE.  Buy a pattern, buy a shipping!! PLUS great international rates, including first pound to Canada is free (which would include an order of up to 2 yards of fabric).
  • Coming Soon-Preview fabrics that are on the horizon & sign up for email alerts for its arrival. We'll send a 5% coupon code. No payment in advance. You still get first crack at the fabric you like & save money...oh and don't forget that free shipping too (note we have the full line of Hello Darling by Bonnie and Camille coming in August)
  • faster navigation to search by designer, brand, collection and style
  • gift certificates in any dollar amount -purchaser can even send a personal message to recipient, and the GC is valid immediately after purchase (for the hubby who forgot an anniversary or birthday!)
  • Gallery -our virtual show & tell of our free patterns, customer quilts and our quilts. Find some inspiration!  
  • Pattern downloads & more FNQ patterns coming soon 
  • There's even links to FREE patterns available on the web!  
If YOU have NOT shopped with Fabrics N Quilts, you NEED to give it a try.  Go play!  Look around.  You'll find gorgeous American Brand Solids, as well as Moda Bella solids, and even PFD Prepared for Dyeing fabrics.  You'll find wide backing, great patterns, notions, rulers, and gorgeous fabrics.  Now, they are sorted by style, as well as manufacturer and designer.   Once you put a few in your cart, play with the block designer! You will find fair prices, too.  I HIGHLY recommend Fabrics N Quilts.  

To celebrate her new Shopping experience and Logo, Shannon is sponsoring a fantastic Giveaway!  You have a chance to win a $35 Gift Certificate towards your shopping cart total. Remember the free shipping?? That counts, too.  Also, she'll be tucking in a few little extras, like this sweet little Half Roll of Robert Kaufman strips, and EVEN some awesome Aurifil thread!!!  Shannon is celebrating but the winner gets the prizes!  

To enter to win on my blog, please leave a comment for the following points:
1.  Have you shopped with Fabrics N Quilts before?  What do you like about the new shop?
2.  Sign up for the shop NEWSLETTER, to hear about sales and more.
3.  Follow Fabrics N Quilts on Facebook, Instagram or  Pinterest  Or all 3 (one comment only, though).  
4.  Follow my blog via email or LIKE me on Facebook.  

Open to ALL.  If an International winner is chosen, you will still get the gift certificate, but will need to pay your shipping charges above your certificate balance.  Leave UP TO 4 comments for 4 chances to win.  This will close on April 30th, and I'll announce the winner on May 1, 2015.  

AND, there's another chance to win another prize at Quilting Gallery this weekend, as well as 2 more chances next weekend!  

Weekend of 4/24:  Quilting Gallery:
Weekend of 5/1    Confessions of a Fabric Addict:
                              Life in the Scrappatch:

Fabrics N Quilts also sponsors the Scrap Quilt Challenge.  You can find all the details Here on Facebook.  You can enter your scrap quilts for a chance to win prizes.  I won a gift certificate last year, and purchased the fabric for this quilt with it!  

So, what are you waiting for?? Go check out Fabrics N Quilts NEW website!  

OOOOOHHHHH, One more thing!  Shannon is currently in Paducah at Quilt Week.  She's a vendor in the Pavilion, #4503.  Go say HI, and tell her Maryellen of Mary Mack Made MIne sent you.  She'll give you a little treat!  I wish I could go, but I'm making dresses.  

Have fun shopping! 
Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, April 20, 2015

Little Gems Winners!

Thanks SEW much for participating in last week's Blog Hop!  It was so much fun, and the Island Batiks Ambassadors who participated really enjoyed your comments.

Without further ado, the winner of the ebook, Little Gems by Connie Kauffman on my blog is Comment #46,

Anonymous said...
I'm fairly new to paper-piecing but it has become my favourite new quilting technique. It' the perfect way to make a mini quilt!

wlinda_ca at 

Linda has been contacted.

The winner for a collection of Island Batik Fat Quarters from me is:

VickiT said...
Beautiful pink mini!
I'm following your Facebook page. 
Vickie, please contact me with your address at marymackmademine at gmail dot com, or through Facebook.  Thanks for being a follower.

I tried clicking on your name and using your "contact me" link, but it goes to an email through Microsoft, and I don't remember my password.  I wish I could make it go to gmail, instead! Oh, well, I hope this works!

Also, thanks to everyone for the likes on my Facebook page.  Although I had over 20 new likes Facebook "deleted" the inactive likes, so I'm currently at 221.  When I get to 250, I do have a prize, so please keep sharing my Facebook Page page.

AND, Stay tuned!  There's another blog hop I'm participating in, where you can win a gift certificate to Fabrics N Quilts.

ANDDDD! if you are going to Paducah this week, and tell Shannon at Fabrics N Quilts that I sent you, you will get a little gift!  She's in the Pavilion, booth #4503, so stop by!

Thanks again!  And, just to add a photo, here's my Aurifil March Mini Challenge, featuring more fabrics from Full Bloom by Island Batiks.

See you soon, with info on Fabrics N Quilts new and improved online shop!
Have a wonderful day!