Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Stitched With Love

We just got back from a marathon holiday shopping excursion and I'm happy to say we got a lot accomplished.

From great gifts to some things that we just needed to have for the next few weeks, the car was pretty full of bags.

I've got a few more Christmas items on my list of things to do, but overall I think I've got it under control.

At least for the moment! 

How about you?

Are you progressing with your holiday to do list or are you just getting started?

Sometimes I think that a little bit of last minute rushing around is part of the fun!

Cookies are the next item on my list and I'm looking forward to trying a few new recipes this year. 

I try to make a few new kinds each year to go with something different.

Sometimes I get to the new cookies, sometimes I don't. 

Kristin, of Yellow Bliss Road, has this great list of over 50 Christmas cookie recipes that look absolutely amazing. 

The recipe for Christmas Magic Layer Brownie Bars is first on my list to try.

But before I start baking, it's time for the Parade!


These Stitched With Love Minis are just so cute!

It's a perfect pattern to make for a sewing friend or to display on the wall of your sewing room.

Here's Hildy's with some flying geese that she added to her finished mini.  That aqua background really pops, and of course I'm a fan of her red striped binding!

This one was made by Brenda. Another one with a great binding!  I love that navy fabric!   And we all know that you certainly can't go wrong with a gray background, and Brenda's mini is no exception!   

After the holiday rush, the January Parade will be something to look forward to, because its free choice!

We'd love to see any handmade gifts you gave or received for the January Parade.

If you have more than one to share, feel free to send them in!

It's so fun to see the projects that you choose!

It's a great time to get new ideas and to see what your friends are working on.

Just send a picture of the finished gift that was completed before the end of December to Sherri McConnell from A Quilting Life, or to me and we'll be happy to get it in the Minis and More Parade in early January.

We welcome new participants and we're happy to answer any questions that you may have.

Have fun with your projects and enjoy the holiday season!

I'm off to open a bag of M&M's and make those cookie bars!   

Thursday, November 1, 2018

It's fall, y'all!

As I write this post, I'm waiting for trick-or-treaters to arrive!

I can see my neighbors out the window setting up chairs to pass out candy in their driveway.

In our neighborhood, most people sit in lawn chairs in their driveways to pass out candy, and some even have a table set up with music and lights too.

After I'm finished writing, I plan to go out there and join the fun! 

Now that we're well into fall, we thought it would be a good time to show the fall quilts that everyone's been making this season.

Our theme for the Minis and More project last month was free choice fall.

Any fall pattern you made was eligible to be in today's Parade.

And we have some cute ones to show you! 

This one is mine.  The pattern is The Maple Leaf Quilt from The Fat Quarter Shop's Classic and Vintage series of patterns.  I used plum Mode Grunge for the background, and batiks for the leaves.  You can read more about it in my previous post

This cute table runner was created by our friend Patty from Elm Street Quilts.  She used the same Fat Quarter Shop pattern as I did, but she turned her's into this wonderful table runner.  She offset the leaves, so it would look like they were tumbling across the table.  If you check out her blog post, you'll see that she made a cute trivet with the Maple Leaf block too! 

This is the cutest witch hat ever!  It was made by Mary who writes the blog, Needled Mom.  She chose a paper pieced pattern by Soma of  Whims and Fancies. Mary likes Soma's patterns because of the impeccable detail and I couldn't agree more!  This is just adorable!  Did you notice Mary's background fabric?  It's a dot to dot!  Mary completed the dot to dot with orange thread.  That must have been fun!

Go over and visit my friend Sherri, at A Quilting Life, to see the other half of the fall Parade!

If you'd like to join us next time, just send a picture of next month's completed project with a short description, to either Sherri or to me, and we'll put it in the Parade. 

It's that easy! 

We give away free patterns to participants from time to time, as a fun, random, 'thank you' prize!

Are you wondering about the pattern for the next Parade?

Camille Roskelley created a cute sewing machine mini pattern that would look great in your sewing area, or it would make a great holiday gift for that sewing friend that already has every quilting gadget on the planet!

I'm planning on making one to put on the wall of my new sewing room.

Oh, I've also seen this pattern made into a sewing bag and I think I've seen it made into a sewing machine cover too.

Well, I need to wrap this up!

There are trick-or-treaters at my door, and boxes of Christmas decorations to put on the tree if I decide to stay inside while I'm giving out candy!

Just kidding about the decorating the Christmas tree part, but I am feeling like it's coming up that fast!

I try to wait until after Thanksgiving to decorate for Christmas, but if I do, I feel like I'm behind.  Is it just me?

When do you start decorating for the holidays?

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Maple Leaf Quilt from the Classic and Vintage Quilt Series

I'd love to show you my Maple Leaf Quilt today!

It's a part of a Fat Quarter Shop Quilt Along featuring the Maple Leaf Quilt from their Classic and Vintage Series of patterns.

Recently, I've been thinking about making a fall quilt with a purple background and when the opportunity came up to make a quilt block for this quilt along, I took it farther and made plenty of blocks, because I thought it would be the perfect time to break out the plum Moda Grunge and make that purple fall quilt I'd been dreaming about!   

I paired the plum Moda Grunge background with lots of different batiks and created some fall leaves.

This is the crib sized quilt. 

I chose the crib size because wanted to make a few leaves of each color, and a few that were mixed to give the quilt a colorful feel with a definite fall vibe.

This Maple Leaf pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop is great because it gives you four different size options, so you can make a few leaves if you want to, or you can go crazy and make a large quilt with leaves all over the place if fall is on your mind!

Batiks seem to show up in so many of my fall quilts, whether I start out planning them that way or not, I've noticed.

I guess it goes back to our time living in Maine when the array of fall colors was dizzying!

Here in Florida, I've got to take my fall leaf quilt pictures with a palm tree background like the picture below, so I've got to work in my fall colors in through my quilts!

Too bad palm tree fronds don't change color in the fall.

Now that we live in Florida, we don't have much of a fall season, which I may have mentioned just a few times in previous posts.  

So, y'all know I miss having fall!

I think that's why I go overboard when it comes to the number of fall quilts I make each year.

This Florida girl still has to get some fall in somehow!

These fun, chunky, offset maple leaves make this pattern a breeze for anyone from a beginning quilter to the more advanced quilter who is looking for a new, fun, fall quilt to make.

Plus, The Fat Quarter Shop has a Maple Leaf Quilt video tutorial on their YouTube Channel that you may want to watch if you decide to make your own Maple Leaf Quilt.

One more fall quilt down for me, only a few left to go before the Christmas quilts kick in.

Have you made any Christmas quilts yet?

Sending the husband to the roof to hang lights now!

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Endless Summer Minis

It certainly is an endless summer here in Florida!

We've had record high temperatures recently and September was actually a warmer month than June, July, or August this year.

So our Parade pattern, Endless Summer Mini by my friend Sherri McConnell is perfect for this time of the year.

I made my blocks with some Halloween Layer Cake squares that I had in my stash because I felt like I needed a little more fall in my life right now.

If you're fortunate enough to be experiencing some cooler temperatures where you are, please send them my way.

I'm ready for jeans and sweaters!

I love Karen's bright Endless Summer Mini.  The green contrast fabric and binding really highlight the floral stars!

Mary, from the blog Needled Mom, made her mini quilt in navy and cream fabrics.  She plans on giving it to a friend as a birthday gift.

This is the back of Mary's mini quilt.  The quilting is beautiful!

This Endless Summer Mini is the one I made with the blocks I showed you just a minute ago.  I used Deb Strain Halloween fabric from the Midnight Masquerade fabric line and Moda Grunge for the background.  You know how much I like Moda Grunge!

You can find Patty blogging at Elm Street Quilts.  She plans to make her Endless Summer Mini quilt block into a one block mini quilt and do some big stitch quilting on it.

Catch the rest of the Parade on Sherri McConnell's blog, A Quilting Life and join us next month by emailing a photo of your finished project to me, or to Sherri, and we'll be sure to get your photo in the Parade.

We'd love to have you! 

Well, we have some fun in store for you for the November Parade.

It's free choice fall project month!

Make the fall themed quilt project of your choice and enter it in next month's Parade.

Sherri and I came up with a few suggestions to give you some ideas to get you started.

Some of these are free tutorials and others are great patterns that you might be interested in.

Keep in mind that these are just suggestions.

You can make any fall project that you'd like!

Now's the time to get started on that pumpkin project you've had your eye on.

Here are a few ideas-

Happy sewing and have a great October!

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Scrap-Basket Bounty

Have you heard? 

Kim Brackett has just come out with another great quilt book called Scrap-Basket Bounty!

I have every quilt book Kim has ever written, so I'm excited to have another to add to my collection.

When I was offered an opportunity to have an early look at Scrap-Basket Bounty, I couldn't say yes fast enough!

I remember when I ran across my first Scrap-Basket book. 

It was in a quilt shop in Cary, North Carolina. 

I picked up the book and flipped through it, this was Scrap-Basket Surprises, and I decided I had to get it. 

I bought the book, and I've been a huge fan ever since!

 I think Kim's Scrap-Basket books should be the foundation to any quilter's library and Scrap-Basket Bounty is no exception. 

I want to make every quilt in the book, and try all the variations!

I love that Kim encourages you to experiment with the quilts and the blocks in the book and put your own spin on them if you'd like to give it a try.

There are 16 single-block quilts in the book. 

Each quilt has two additional block arrangements or two color variations at the end of the pattern to get you thinking about other options for your quilt.

 I don't think I can pick just one favorite block or quilt in Scrap-Basket Bounty because there are so many that I love, but Falling Stars did stand out to me right away as the one I need to make first.

The variations for Falling Stars are just amazing!

Kim likes using scraps, and all of the quilts in this book are scrap friendly, and a great way to make your scrap pile, or in my case scrap piles, a little smaller.

 You might find yourself mixing fabrics by the same designer, or mixing different fabric collections, or maybe you'll be rummaging around in your scrap basket to find some special fabrics to make the quilts in Scrap-Basket Bounty.

I wouldn't be surprised if you want to make every quilt in the book!

You can read more about Kim's quilting and her new book on her blog, Magnolia Bay Quilts.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Welcome September!

I don't know about you, but I can't wait for fall!

We're definitely not feeling any fall weather here in Florida yet, but that hasn't stopped me from pulling out the fall decorations and the pumpkin spice coffee K-cups and acting like fall is in the air.

 I'm even wearing jeans today, despite the heat!

No matter what the weather is like where you are, it is the beginning of September and you know that means, it's time for the Parade!

 The Trip Around The World Mini Quilt from Samantha of Aqua Paisley Studio was the mini we were working on last month.

With a fun construction method, this free tutorial was something a little different for us and I'm excited to share these projects with you!

You'll see some here, and there are more to view on Sherri McConnell's blog, A Quilting Life.

Mary, from the blog Needled Mom, has been wanting to make this pattern for a long time and I'm so glad that she was able to make it and share it with us, because it's gorgeous!  I love the yellows and grays she used here. The placement of the prints just really makes this quilt shine!

Patty made this smaller version of the project and it looks great!  The fallish colors she used and the cute fall leaf print really make this cute little mini appropriate for this month.  I'll bet she has this out on a table somewhere right now!  You can read more about what Patty is up to on her blog, Elm Street Quilts.  

Our mini for next month is something special!

Sherri and I have chosen her brand new pattern,  Endless Summer Mini.

It was just released a few days ago, so I'm really excited about making it!  I love making a pattern when it's hot off the presses.

As soon as I saw it,  I asked Sherri if she would be okay with us using it as our next Minis and More featured pattern. 

Photo of Endless Summer Mini by Sherri McConnell used with permission.

The name is perfect for this time of year, don't you think?

Sherri mentioned to me that you could make this quilt very fall like and I think you could also go with a summer vibe if you were feeling that way. 

Any way you make this mini it will be lovely!

Send us the photos of your completed Endless Summer Mini by the end of the month and we'll be sure to get them in the Parade. 

If you have any questions, don't hesitate to send me an email.

Oh by the way, you can find the pattern in Sherri's Etsy Shop by clicking here.   There's also a large version of this quilt if you're interested. 

We would love to include your work in the next Parade!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Welcome to August

Hello everyone!

Back to school is right around the corner!  In some counties close to us, the first day of school is today!  It seems like the summer went by so fast, but fall is my favorite time of the year and it 's so hot here in Florida, so I guess I don't really mind that summer is coming to an end.

Fall will bring big changes to my family as my youngest leaves to start college in a few short weeks. The house will be much quieter and we will miss him so much, but it is time for him to leave the nest.  

He'll only be an hour away, so I may be seeing more of him than I think!  He's been practicing doing his laundry and we've made a few trips to Target where we ended up pushing two carts by the time we were done, so I guess we are as ready as we'll ever be!

Now I'll just have more time for quilting!

Now, let's start August with the Minis and More Parade.

There are some Parade pictures here and some on Sherri McConnell's blog, A Quilting Life.  Be sure to take a few minutes and visit Sherri to view the other half of the Parade when you're done here.

We always love to have new friends join in the Parade and we love for you to stop by and visit too.  If you have any questions don't hesitate to email me. We love hearing from you and the Parade is open to everyone!

I made mine with a mix of fabrics including Coney Island and Lulu Lane and I added a few other fabrics to the mix also.  I really like how they turned out!  The pattern calls for mostly charm squares, but I used a combination of charm squares and scraps that I had on hand from a quilt I made last fall.

This is called Clay's Choice.

Here is Barn Star.

This one is Duck and Ducklings.

Hildy made a creative pillow out of the Barn Star Mini Quilt.  I love that she made the middle portion of the block out of a single fabric!  This would be a great spot for a larger print like Hildy used here and it would be an extra special place for that favorite print that you just can't cut up.  I have to admit I have quite a few of those!  Hildy used some peach-y pink fabrics from the Nest collection in her beautiful pillow which is perfect for these hot summer days!

I'm so excited to tell you about our pattern for next month's Parade!

It's a Trip Around The World Mini Quilt!

I've never made this kind of quilt before, so this will be all new for me.  I think a mini is the perfect place to start, don't you?  And even if you have made one before, 
I'll bet you can't resist making this cute little mini!

This photo is property of Samantha of Aqua Paisley Studios.

Just send us the photo of your finished mini quilt at the end of August, and we'll put it in the Parade!  We plan to have the Parade on September third, since the first will fall on a Saturday.

Have a great time making this adorable quilt and enjoy getting ready for fall!

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Christmas in July and you may even see a little Alaskan snow too!

It's Christmas in July today! 

And as busy as my family has been in the last few weeks it sure feels like it is Christmas time over here!

My son graduated as valedictorian of his high school and not long after that we went to the Preview  program for a few days at the university he'll be attending in the fall.  He signed up for classes and got the lay of the land so to speak. 

He's going to school where his brother went, so he was pretty comfortable with everything from the beginning, but it's still a big step.

While all this was going on, after pondering it for at least a year, I finally ordered a new machine for quilting!  The quilt tops are piling up and I decided it was time to move forward.  But I'll tell you all about that another day. 

Then in less than a week, we were off for an Alaskan cruise, Voyage of the Glaciers!

Wow, was it beautiful!  Absolutely amazing!  I've always wanted to see a glacier and we saw so many!  It was incredible!  And, I have to add, it was incredibly cold for this Florida girl!

It was difficult to picture how cold it was going to be in Alaska when we left hot, humid Florida.  Luckily, I was prepared because I did bring clothes to use as layers and boy did I take advantage of that!  I'd definitely go back and I'd recommend the cruise to anyone who is interested in glaciers and in Alaska. 

After the Parade today, I'll sneak in a few Alaska vacation photos for those of you who are interested in staying around and looking at a few.  Edited to add: Okay, now it's more than a few once everyone got involved!

Hildy sent in these two lovely pictures of her beautiful quilt.  She created her own mini version of Carrie Nelson's Village pattern.  Hildy mixed Vintage Holiday and Swell fabrics to make the spectacular quilt that you see here!  She calls it Christmas Candy Cottage.  I think its gorgeous.  Thanks so much for sharing it with us Hildy!

The rest of the Christmas in July Parade can be found on Sherri McConnell's blog, A Quilting Life!
Be sure to stop by and visit.

The project that Sherri and I have picked out for the next Parade is cute, sweet, and the pattern is free!  

You can easily find it over at the Moda Bake Shop.

Image used is from the Moda Bake Shop.

Feel free to make all of them or just one.  You can use a single charm pack, add a little yardage and you are on your way to having your own Barn Star Mini Quilt!

Send in your photo to me or to Sherri before the first of August and we'll put you in the Parade.  Don't hesitate to email your questions if you have any.  New to the Parade?  We'd love to have you join us!

If you are interested in sticking around for a few Alaska vacation pictures you are more than welcome.  These were mostly taken by my son, Aidan.  We just got back a few days ago and haven't gone through all of the pictures yet, but here are a few favorites so far.

An old dock in Icy Straight Point, Alaska.

That time we canoed to, then hiked on the Mendenhall Glacier and although it was fun, I did wonder what I was thinking when I was told there would be a harness involved.

The view from our canoe looking at Mendenhall Glacier.

The Harvard Glacier from our balcony on the cruise ship.

The Harvard Glacier calving.  Calving is when chunks of ice fall off as the glacier moves forward.
Taken by my husband.

 Another view of the Harvard Glacier in College Fjord.

The view from our room in Vancouver, British Columbia where we got on the cruise ship.

Another scene from beautiful Vancouver, Canada in Stanley Park.

 Sea lions on a buoy during our whale watching cruise Icy Straight Point.

We spotted lots of Humpback whales.
Taken by my husband.

And we were fortunate enough to see Orca whales too.
Taken by my husband.

Luckily, we didn't sign up for this tour in Skagway.  I'm not so sure about the driver.

The Marjorie Glacier in Glacier Bay National Park.
Taken by my husband.

The Marjorie Glacier from a different view.

The John Hopkins Glacier

White Pass Railroad in Skagway, Alaska

 Whittier, Alaska, where we ended our cruise.

I'm glad you stuck around for the vacation photo portion of this post!  When my family found out I was including Alaska pictures in this post they wanted to show you their favorites.  I kept it simple, but if you have any questions I'd be more than happy to answer them!

Friday, June 1, 2018

'Seams' like summer!

May was a month filled with milestones!

Birthdays, graduations, vacations, and many other fun events were going on as many of us wrapped up the school year and started to look forward to summer.

Minis and More participants were thinking about summer too as we made projects for the Parade.

It was all about choosing any kind of summer project.

Flowers, fruits, and beach balls were things to consider when I started thinking about ideas for this month's Parade.

Watermelons came to Mary's mind when she was deciding what to create for Minis and More this month.  Mary used a free pattern by Lindsey Weight for Fort Worth Fabric Studio called Watermelon Whimsy. Thanks so much Mary, for providing the link! https://www.fortworthfabricstudio.com/sites/default/files/watermelon_whimsy.pdf
I love the fabric that Mary used for the watermelons. It makes them look so realistic! Mary's blog Needled Mom is filled with her fun projects and family gatherings.  Be sure to visit Mary and say "Hello!"   

Karen liked the idea of strawberries for her summer themed project, so she made a table runner from the 'Strawberry Ichigo' pattern by Sew-Ichigo that she found on Craftsy. The strawberries are paper pieced and Karen says she figured out the rest as she went along.  We all love seeing the different ways that a pattern can be used!  Karen's strawberries are so bright and cheerful. Perfect for our summer themed Parade!

The rest of the June Minis and More Parade can be found on Sherri McConnell's blog, A Quilting Life.

Our next Parade will have a Christmas theme!

It's another free choice month as long as your project has a winter holiday focus.

Pick a holiday pattern you've been meaning to try or just use some holiday fabric you have in your stash, the choice is yours!

  Good news! You have some extra time to work on your project.  Please note that this Parade will be on July 10th.

Extra sewing time is always a bonus!


Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Parade Of Homes


We're having a Parade of homes this month.

What a great month to be focused on houses.  My husband and I went on a house tour in our area a few weeks ago called the Parade of Homes. We were trying to get some ideas for a bathroom makeover that we plan to take on in the fall and we also wanted to check out some other areas of our city.  We had a great time and we may have even gotten a few too many renovation ideas!  Lots of sawdust might be coming our way!

The homes we are talking about in the Minis and More Parade today are from a brand new mini quilt pattern by my co-host Sherri McConnell.

It's called Be My Neighbor Mini and it's so adorable!

You can find Sherri's new patterns and fabrics and the other half of the Parade on Sherri's blog, A Quilting Life, when you're done here.  Her awesome new blog format is amazing!  There's lots to see over there!

And now the Parade!

This outstanding entry was created by Mary from the blog Needled Mom!  This is just so creative!  I love that Mary used primarily gray and white fabrics then she just added a small pop of color.  The polka dot border is perfect for this mini quilt.  One of the things I love about the Minis and More Parade is seeing things that I would have never thought of for a particular pattern and also seeing how different the same pattern can look when we all add our own creativity to it.  That's why I love quilting!  Thank you Mary for sharing this with us!

The next Be My Neighbor project is mine.  I used a few of Sherri and Chelsi's fabric collections, mostly Desert Bloom and Valley fabrics.  My version of the pattern is on the busy side, which I love, because I used the lighter, low volume fabrics from the fabric collections as my backgrounds.  I have to say that I'm really pleased with how it turned out!  Did you notice that for the background fabrics by several of the roofs I used a fabric that looks like raindrops?  Okay, I went with that so much that I had to redo one section because I accidentally sewed the raindrops on upside-down.  I tried to leave it that way, but I just couldn't, so I had some resewing to do!  I'm happy with these fun, little houses!  My high school senior was impressed with how these houses went together, windows and all.    

The June first Parade will be fun!

My son will be graduating from high school that week and there are lots of activities going on for the seniors, so I'm not sure how timely my part of the Parade will be, but I'm sure you all understand.  I just realized that as I'm typing this paragraph.  That's coming up fast. Wow!  June already, what happened?

Okay, sorry about that. Anyway, for the June Parade we are having summer free choice!

That means we'd like for you to have some kind of summer theme going on.  You know, maybe a watermelon quilt, or popsicles, some kind of summery fabric or something like that. 

It's up to you!

I was kind of pondering Camille's Mini Fireworks pattern, but I'm not sure what I'll do.

So many possibilities!

We can't wait to see your summer free choice project, so don't hesitate to participate along with us and send in a picture of what you've created!