Coming Soon: 100 Blocks Vol. 13 Blog Tour!

Vol13 blog tour coming socialmedia Coming Soon: 100 Blocks Vol. 13 Blog Tour!

Mark your calendars: Our 100 Blocks Volume 13 Blog Tour is happening in a couple of weeks! Join us May 2-6 for designer inspiration, giveaways and lots of quilty fun.

This newest volume of 100 Blocks features a great collection of blocks — from hearts to whimsical flowers, from spinning wheels to umbrellas, from turtles to teddy bears — from your favorite designers including Bonnie Hunter, Scott Murkin, Margie Ullery and more.

The issue hits newsstands May 3, and is available to purchase early as a print or digital issue in our online shop. We also have a new Special Issue Auto Ship program where you can sign up to have all Quiltmaker special issues delivered straight to your mailbox.

Here’s a peek at a couple of the fabulous quilt blocks:

QM MARSH Coming Soon: 100 Blocks Vol. 13 Blog Tour!

First Class designed by Sue Marsh

QM CARR Coming Soon: 100 Blocks Vol. 13 Blog Tour!

Going Dutch designed by Kari Carr

See you May 2-6 right here on Quilty Pleasures for our 100 Blocks Vol. 13 Blog Tour!

Happy Quilting,
Natalie

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Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

Tricia Patterson

Greetings! My name is Tricia Patterson. I recently joined Quiltmaker as an associate editor. I’ve worked as an instructional designer and project manager, mostly with learning and information technology organizations, for many years. My dream has always been to tie instructional design with my passion for fiber art in a job. I’m excited to be living my dream.

I grew up in Greensburg, Indiana. It was a small mid-western farm community when I was young. My first memory of fabric is not my baby binky, rather the carefully drawn knife and fork my grandma put on the end of a tea towel to teach me how to handle a sewing needle. She taught my sister and I how to embroider the towel in between spewing out loads of basket quilt blocks from her treadle sewing machine. I also remember we took scraps from her basket nearby to dress our dolls. My sewing skills grew as she guided me through many 4-H clothing projects. My grandmother planted the first seeds of passion for the touch of fabric, the splendor of many colors and an itch to stitch.

As a young woman I sewed as much as possible. I made clothes for my younger sister and brother, myself, and then for my husband and sons. My sewing projects led me to quilting during its renaissance in the mid ’70s. I completed my first hand-stitched baby quilt with the birth of my first son. I was hooked from there. When parenting started taking more time and I began working outside my home, the quilting projects became smaller in size. I discovered I could take piecing projects with me to the boys’ ball games and practices. I also learned that I could get to the satisfaction of a finished project quicker because a small wall hanging or throw didn’t take as long to complete. During that time period I learned hand stitching was an art form to treasure. Since then I’ve always had a large hand-stitch quilt in progress. My sons have blessed me with many events that deserve a quilt: graduations, leaving home for college, marriages, births, lounging on the couch to watch TV, and decorating a grandchild’s room.

I moved to Colorado, became more involved with work and migrated to making art quilts by machine. Although some are still hand-stitched I have been developing my machine stitching skills through these wall hangings. I’ve hand-dyed or printed many of the fabrics I use. I enjoy embellishing them with special beads, ribbons, yarn, buttons, and many recycled objects. I have been known to add stars cut from beer cans to the face of a wall quilt. I create thread-painted and crocheted pieces to adorn them, and some contain embroidery stitches (Thank you, Grandma.). I do follow one rule: All of my wall hangings must contain some element of traditional quilting.

I’ve always been a traditionalist at heart. I love the history that quilting brings forward to our modern day. Perhaps it’s a longing to stay connected. It makes me feel really good to know that there is something I’m doing that my grandmother also found engaging. I think that’s why, when I make a bed quilt for my family, I give them a hand-stitched one. I may use modern patterns, a twist on traditional, or a design I’ve created special for them. (I’ve shared a few of them with you below.) With a quilt I’m giving my time, a piece of my creativity, sharing something they know I endear, as well as passing on family memories that I hope they will also cherish.

I couldn’t believe my fortune to have this job come my way. I walked in on my first day of work to see quilts hanging on all the walls, over the cube sides, in the cubes, on the desks of the cubes–everywhere. You can’t beat working with people who share your passion. Quilts are in my life every day as I work on calculating yardage, writing descriptions or assembly directions. I get to see so many creative and wonderful quilt patterns and fabric choices. The best part is when the quilts for our publications arrive from their makers. The quilts are spread out; my co-workers take a break from their desks to gather around one-by-one. There is a breath of silence as we absorb and then murmurs of appreciation come: for the pattern, fabric, quilting motif, and the maker–because that’s what quilters do. It’s then that I know I’m in the best place for me.

Here are a few favorites of my hand-stitched quilts:

I asked my daughter-in-law Gina to send me a picture so I could share the quilt I made for her graduation from optometry school.  Note she received this quilt before she became engaged to my son. I knew then she was special. A mother’s intuition…

GinaQuilt1 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

GinaQuilt2 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

I made the quilt below to celebrate the marriage of my youngest son and his wife. The choice of the Double Wedding Ring design doesn’t need an explanation. I added the Cathedral Windows to symbolize the importance of looking through the grist of daily life to remember the love you share.

AJJWeddingQuilt1 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

AJJWeddingQuilt2 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

I want to share this wall hanging because it’s my first authentic art quilt and the one I’m most proud of. It took me three months to create. It’s all hand-stitched. Notice the metal stars? I call this quilt Colorado. My sons call it the shrapnel quilt. They aren’t fans of my art quilts, preferring my traditional hand-stitched bed quilts. I think that’s pretty cool because I hoped they would appreciate the historical significance of this stuff that mom is always doing.

 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

 Introducing QM Associate Editor Tricia Patterson

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Does Your ‘Sewing Time’ Ever Go Like This?

QNMP ED LORI 000678 bl Does Your Sewing Time Ever Go Like This?

Lori Baker

By Lori Baker, Quiltmaker Acquisitions Editor

Today, I want to tell you a little about my current quilting projects. The editorial staff in our office puts together four magazines: Quiltmaker, Quilters Newsletter, McCall’s Quilting and Quick Quilts. Although many of the quilts we feature come from quiltmakers like you, those of us on staff make some of the quilts and do many of the extras; lessons and color options, that sort of thing. So much of the time, I have a project or two that I need to work on for one of the magazines. Right now, I am preparing a lesson on binding quilts for the September/October issue of McCall’s Quilting and I’m making my version of a quilt from a previous issue for I Love This Quilt in the July/August issue. I also need to make a quilt for a lesson in the August/September issue of Quilters Newsletter.

I’d like to say that I’m very organized and focused, but that would not be the truth. I often have multiple projects going at the same time. So the fact that I have three quilts to make right now doesn’t make me crazy, but I do know I need to get busy.

I promised myself that I’d be diligent this week so I could cross some of the items off of my to-do list. I went home last night and heated leftovers for dinner and threw the dishes in the dishwasher to get those chores out of the way and moved on to the fun of sewing.

140416 Lori1 Does Your Sewing Time Ever Go Like This?

I sat down to finish quilting the wall quilt for the lesson on binding quilts.

I sat down to finish quilting the wall quilt for the lesson on binding quilts. I got about halfway around the center medallion on the first row of echo quilting and my machine started skipping stitches.

160414 Lori2 Does Your Sewing Time Ever Go Like This?

I got about halfway around the center medallion on the first row of echo quilting and my machine started skipping stitches.

I folded that quilt up and started thinking about the next project. And it didn’t occur to me until just now that I didn’t do my usual troubleshooting steps. I didn’t rethread, check the bobbin and/or change the needle. What was I thinking? I just quit.

Next, I looked at the pretty quilt on the design wall, my quilt for I Love This Quilt. I have the blocks made and sewn together and the first border is attached. I’m ready to make the second border, which will be pieced.

160414 Lori3 Does Your Sewing Time Ever Go Like This?

Next, I looked at the pretty quilt on the design wall, my quilt for I Love This Quilt.

But if the machine is skipping stitches, I reasoned, I didn’t want to try to make the pieced border. Again, I didn’t do any troubleshooting or testing. Often when a machine is just a little off, it will sew through two layers of fabric nicely but add that layer of batting and it won’t do as well. I’m shaking my head today and wondering where my logic and self-discipline were last night.

I have multiple machines – three modern day machines and several working “classic” machines that I could have used, but we were going to have an overnight guest and I didn’t want to be moving machines when he arrived. So I just ruled out anything involving actual sewing. Again, today I’m questioning that. Our guest wasn’t due to arrive until much later. I had plenty of time to get out a different machine and put away the one that was skipping stitches.

160414 Lori4 Does Your Sewing Time Ever Go Like This?

In the end, I cut patches for the third quilt.

In the end, I cut patches for the third quilt. And felt satisfied with a good evening’s work … definitely not focused, but happy that I’d accomplished something measurable.

Does your sewing time ever go like that? I imagine it does for some of you anyway.

Until next time, happy quilting.

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100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along – Block 6

Welcome to Block 6 of the 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along.

100BLKS SAMP ALL 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 6

three versions of the 100 Blocks Sampler

This 100 Blocks Sampler quilt features a collection of quilt blocks taken from different issues of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks magazines and reduced to 6″. Click here to catch up on the previous sew along blog posts. Quilt kits are available, as well as the pattern only.

Block 6 is Old Town Star, block #448 from 100 Blocks, volume 5. This block was designed by Katie Blakesley.

448 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 6

Old Town Star, block #448 designed by Katie Blakesley

This simple block uses triangle-squares and plain patches.

448 2 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 6

triangle-squares

448 3 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 6

Old Town Star assembly

Here are three different versions:

448 4 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 6

Old Town Star, three different versions

Katie is sewing along with us. Be sure to check out Katie’s block on her blog.

The fabrics we’ve used in our versions are just suggestions for how the blocks can be sewn. Be creative with your fabric choices—vary color and value placement.

Don’t forget to send pictures of your blocks to editor@quiltmaker.com. I’ll add them to our blog. There might even be a little giveaway!

Visit the other designers who are sewing along with us:

Lynn Roddy Brown

Jessie Kurtz

Toby Lischko

See you next week for block 7.

 

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10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Ah, springtime. There’s something so refreshing about that time of year when winter begins to fade away and spring emerges. With the flowers in bloom, the birds chirping and the sun setting later in the day, everything just seems a bit lighter and happier. It’s so creatively inspiring – I can’t help but daydream about pretty floral fabric prints and cheery spring quilts. Below, I’ve gathered together a handful of spring quilt patterns to inspire your spring quilting – from full-size quilts and wall hangings to quilt blocks and more.

HappySpringDay 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Happy Spring Day

Happy Spring Day quilt block pattern: This adorable block was designed by Meagan Taylor and Kristi Jones for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 11. Isn’t it the cutest?

PetitJardin 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Petit Jardin

Petit Jardin quilt pattern: Designed by Theresa Eisenger, this is one of the most popular wall quilt patterns we’ve ever published in Quiltmaker. The design appeared in our March/April ’10 edition.

SpringFever 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Spring Fever

Spring Fever quilt block pattern: Susan Knapp designed this happy foundation pieced block for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 12.

TulipTwist 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Tulip Twist

FREE Tulip Twist quilt pattern: This fresh-as-spring lap quilt pattern uses strip piecing and a fast fusible appliqué technique. Download the free pattern here!

Spring Skinnie 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Spring Skinnie

Spring Skinnie quilt pattern: This seasonal wall hanging designed by Margie Ullery appeared in our March/April ’13 issue. Just last week, we were delighted when a reader shared with us a version of this quilt made by her 7-year-old granddaughter.

Dancing Butterflies 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Dancing Butterflies

Dancing Butterflies quilt pattern: We can’t leave out this precious quilt from our new May/June ’16 issue! Designed by Kate Colleran, this sweet baby quilt features pastel prints, appliqué butterflies and simple piecing. Kits are available for a limited time.

PrimrosePatch 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Primrose Patch

FREE Primrose Patch quilt pattern: This wall/throw quilt designed by Eileen Fowler is perfect for beating the winter blues! The pattern is included in our free Paper Piecing Patterns ebook.

Spring Block 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Spring

Spring quilt block pattern: Designed by Deonn Stot, this cute-as-can-be block appeared in 100 Blocks Volume 10.

SpringtimeSpin 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Springtime Spin

Springtime Spin quilt pattern: Foundation piecing is used to create the spiky patches and twirly pinwheels in this quilt designed by Jo Moury. The pattern is in our Quilts from Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Spring ’16 issue.

SpringSquared 10 Spring Quilt Patterns & Project Ideas

Spring Squared

Spring Squared quilt block pattern: Deborah Johnson designed this pretty block for Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 8.

Want more spring quilting ideas? Check out our new Spring Quilt Ideas board on Pinterest!

Happy Quilting,
Natalie

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100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along – Block 5

Hi Everyone,

Welcome to week 5 of the 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along. Are you sewing along with us? How are your 100 Blocks Sampler blocks coming along?

100BLKS SAMP ALL 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 5

three versions of the 100 Blocks Sampler

We’d love to see your blocks. Email pictures of your blocks to editor@quiltmaker.com, and I’ll put together a collage of your blocks for everyone to see.

If you’re just now joining us, this 100 Blocks Sampler is a collection of quilt blocks taken from different issues of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks magazines reduced to 6″. Click here to catch up on previous blog posts. Quilt kits are available, as well as the pattern only.

Today’s block is Ladder Up, block #586 from Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks, volume 6. This block was designed by Toby Lischko. Be sure to check out Toby’s block on her blog as well as the other designers sewing along with us. They’re all listed at the bottom.

Here’s Ladder Up.

586 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 5

Ladder UP, block #586

586 2 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 5

Ladder Up units

586 3 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 5

Ladder Up assembly

586 4 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 5

Ladder Up, three different colorways

Later in our sew along, we’ll be featuring a block designed by Kimberly Jolly of the Fat Quarter Shop. She has posted a great little video tutorial for framing quilt blocks. I think this is a great idea for our 100 Blocks Sampler blocks.

I also framed a little quilt that I made to go with a larger quilt of mine. My framed project is a little different from Kimberly’s—I quilted mine first. You can see how I made mine here.

Keep these in mind for some of your extra fabric. They’re great for gifts or to use in your own home! I’m working on a red and white one that I’ll show in a future post.

Designers sewing along:

Lynn Roddy Brown

Carrie Nelson 

Jessie Kurtz

Toby Lischko

See you next week. And don’t forget to send in pictures of your blocks to editor@quiltmaker.com!

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Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

by Emily Klaczak
QM Scrap Squad

emilycropped Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

Emily Klaczak

“Your quilts are too nice to sleep under,” said my husband Joe one morning, as he was making the bed. “Can you make one that’s not so pretty? One that’s just made from scraps?”

We had been using one of  my scrappy quilts that summer, but it was made from predominantly blue and violet fabrics, to coordinate with our bedroom. I think that’s what he meant by ‘too nice’—it was too thought-out and it didn’t fit in with his idea of ‘scrappy.’ I think he wanted a quilt that looked as though I’d scattered the contents of my sewing room waste basket on the floor, and then sewed the pieces together as they fell. I wasn’t about to do that, but I did go to Bonnie Hunter for inspiration. She is one of my favorite scrap quilt designers.

In my personal pantheon, Pat Speth and Bonnie Hunter are the Goddesses of Scrapitude. They have inspired me to carefully sort, trim and store my scraps, and they’ve taught me that there is a place in a quilt for every bit of fabric, no matter how small the square (within reason!) or how strange the color or pattern.

QM scrap squadB Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in ParadiseI chose Bonnie’s Mai Tais in Paradise as my final Scrap Squad quilt. It was hard to choose from her many designs, but I was attracted by the combination of star and Nine Patch blocks.

maitais Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

Bonnie Hunter’s original Mai Tais in Paradise block for Quiltmaker’s Sept/Oct ’12 issue

I redrafted the pattern so that the blocks would finish to 10-1/2″ and was pleased to note that there would be minimal preparation of fabrics, since I had pre-cut my scrap stash into squares ranging from 2-1/2″ to 6-1/2″.

maitais2 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

The alternating blocks for Mai Tais in Paradise by Bonnie Hunter for Quiltmaker

The Nine Patches and star centers were 2-1/2″ squares. I used 5-1/2″ squares for the half-square triangle blocks, trimming them to size after they were sewn together, and I cut 2-1/2″ strips from 4-1/2″ and 6-1/2″ squares for the rectangles within the star blocks and the Nine Patch block borders.

I mixed up the colors and prints up as much as possible and tried to avoid high contrast designs. I wanted the viewer to look at the quilt and see colors, not white flowers on dark green backgrounds or red balloons against light blue skies.  And I also invited pastels to come and play with their bolder siblings; I didn’t want to use only beiges and creams for the lighter squares and triangles.

scraps 300x268 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

And there’s still plenty more where these came from!

Selection of the fabrics took more time than cutting, and then I began to chain piece the squares and triangles. I had recently recorded several hours of Doctor Who episodes during a BBC America marathon, and the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors kept me company while I sewed the blocks together.

blocks 300x223 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

I did change the pattern of darks and lights in the nine patch squares so that there would be more light fabrics; I didn’t want the quilt to be too dark.

I did change the pattern of darks and lights in the Nine Patch squares so that there would be more light fabrics; I didn’t want the quilt to be too dark. I took some care to lay out the completed squares so that I did not have similar colors touching at the corners.

floor 223x300 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

On my “design floor”

I thought the quilt needed a border that would not call attention to itself. So I went back to the stash for tone-on-tones that read as solids.

border 300x214 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

I didn’t want anything too distracting in the border.

As I was sewing the blocks together, I thought of how I might quilt it on my home sewing machine. I had planned to quilt in the ditch around each block, and decided it might be interesting to quilt the alternating designs differently. So I did loopy bubbles over the Nine Patch blocks, and large squares on the star block, repeating the loopy bubbles in the center square of each star.

quilting 300x223 Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

I usually do scrappy quilt backs but I found six yards of a medium blue star print languishing in my stash. Time to put it to work!

And here’s Joe with his finished quilt:

emilyklaczak Emily Joins Bonnie Hunter for Mai Tais in Paradise

There he is, standing on a bench on our backyard deck.

Blogging for Quiltmaker as a member of the 2015 Scrap Squad has been an amazing experience and I feel honored to have been a member of this select group of talented quilters.

Donna, Julie, Kathy, Keri and Pam, it’s been fun peeking over your shoulders, watching your quilts come together. Diane, thank you for the challenges that you offered to us, and for your guidance and support.

And Joe, thank you for walking the dog, making dinner, cleaning the house, and making the time for me to create. And thank you, Quilty Pleasures readers, for following us on our quilting adventures. Love you all!!!!

~Emily~

 

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100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along – Block 4

Hi! Welcome back to the 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along. This week we’re making block 4, Bingo, block #477 designed by Jessie Kurtz. In case you’re joining us for the first time, here’s what the three different versions of the 100 Blocks Sampler look like.

100BLKS SAMP ALL 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

three versions of the 100 Blocks Sampler

Kits available in three variations for this quilt, and the pattern only is available as well.

Here are the first three blocks that we’ve included this month:

261 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Spinning Star, block #261 designed by Lynn Roddy Brown

967 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Village Square, block #967 designed by Mickey Depre

291 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Get the Point, block #291 designed by Carrie Nelson

Did you see Carrie’s pillow that she’s making with her block?

And here is block #4, Bingo, block #477 designed by Jessie Kurtz.

477 1 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Bingo, block #477, designed by Jessie Kurtz

477 2 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Bingo assembly diagram

477 3 100 Blocks Sampler Sew Along   Block 4

Bingo in three different colorways

Don’t forget to check out our designers who are sewing along with us:

Jessie Kurtz is sewing Bingo and the first three blocks on her blog today. She’s using blue and green prints from her stash for the project.

Lynn Roddy Brown has also been sewing along each week. She’s using solids for her version.

See you next week for a new block.

P.S. If you are sewing along with us, we’d love to see your blocks! Post photos on your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts and use the hashtag #100BlocksSampler

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Bonnie Hunter Q&A: Scrap Quilts Online Course

What do all quilters have in common? Scraps. And many of us love using those little treasured leftovers to make scrap quilts, of course. If you’re looking for some helpful ideas on how to save and organize your scraps and then use them to their full potential in your quilt designs, be sure to check out our Scrap Quilts with Bonnie Hunter online course.

BonnieHunterQuiltBlocks Bonnie Hunter Q&A: Scrap Quilts Online Course

Top Row, L-R: Moth in the Window, Wild and Goosey, Mai Tais in Paradise
Bottom Row, L-R: Twirl Around, Pinwheel Fancy and Idaho Square Dance

This online course focuses on quilt block construction, with the final quilt being up to the imagination of the maker. The six projects were inspired by some of Bonnie’s favorite blocks from her QM Addicted to Scraps column: Moth in the Window, Wild and Goosey, Mai Tais in Paradise, Twirl Around, Pinwheel Fancy and Idaho Square Dance. We recently caught up with Bonnie to chat about the course – here’s what she had to say:

BonnieHunter Bonnie Hunter Q&A: Scrap Quilts Online Course

Bonnie Hunter

What makes this course unique from all of the other courses on this same topic?
I believe this course is different from all the other courses as I take students back to ground zero, unlearning things they may have learned incorrectly and making Scrap Quilting with the Scrap User’s System an easy and fun endeavor with great results.

If the students can only retain one thing from his course, what should it be?
Sew by UNIT SIZE! It’s the size of the unit that makes units easy to put together. If we sew so the units sizes are correct, everything else about patchwork falls easily into place. Accuracy in cutting matters just as much as accuracy in where to actually place the seam to create the correct unit size.

Why do you love teaching this topic and utilizing it in your own personal projects?
I love teaching students how much fun and freeing creating beautiful quilts with scraps can be. When we allow ourselves to sew with ALL of our fabric, instead of limiting ourselves to one collection by a single designer or manufacturer, we open up a whole new world of possibilities. What comes forth is a unique quilt that is indeed a reflection of the maker, not of the fabric manufacturer. This is where true art begins.

Watch a preview of the online course:

Visit Craft University to learn more about Scrap Quilts with Bonnie Hunter! Registration for the current session closes April 4, with two more sessions scheduled for later this year.

Happy Quilting,
Natalie

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True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

Something wonderful happened to me in February when I was on quilt retreat with a dozen friends in Colorado.

globe3 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

Bev’s Stitchery

There’s a little fabric store in Buena Vista called Bev’s Stitchery. We usually stop in because they have some nice quilting fabrics, tons of current books, quality thread and any notions we forgot to bring.

The store has been owned and operated by Bev and her husband for many years.

globe4 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

A display case something like this contained the pincushion, along with many other old, dusty, forgotten trinkets and merchandise.

I had always admired a vintage pincushion in the display case at Bev’s. I have a collection of red tomato pincushions and am always searching for unusual examples, and this one was amazing. It was a globe of red velveteen, and it spun on a golden axis like a classroom globe.

vintage globe on5mu4 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

So one time I asked Bev if she would consider selling it to me. I got a flat “no.” I understood, but that didn’t mean I stopped wanting the pincushion. The next year I asked her again. She hesitated, but said no again.

globe1 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

The dusty vintage pincushion held old pins and needles. It was made of red velveteen and was on a stand like a globe.

Third time around, Bev’s husband was running the fabric store. I asked if he would consider selling me the pincushion. “Oh no, I would have no idea what to charge for it.” I was bummed but I tried to accept that the pincushion would never be mine.

This year, two friends and I stopped in again. We all paid for our items and when we got back to the car, my friend Carol handed me a small brown paper bag. “Happy Birthday,” she said. I’d turned 56 ten days earlier.

I opened the bag and—oh my word—there was the much-coveted red velveteen pincushion! Somehow sly Carol had talked the owner out of it. She had bought the pincushion for me!

It was one of the nicest things a friend ever did. She knew how much I wanted it, how many times I had tried to buy it. She knew how flatly I’d been refused. And she must have used some seriously slick negotiating skills in order to make it happen. I was so touched.

globe2 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

The pincushion cleaned up nicely! And surprise! There’s a tape measure!

At home I removed all the old pins and needles. I rubbed my fingers over the holes to help them disappear. I gave the whole thing a good dusting. I realized that the three prongs on the base are meant to hold a thimble! To top it all off, there is a tape measure hidden in the globe’s base. Fully intact, including the retraction mechanism.

globe5 True Friends and Sewing Collectibles

My friend Carol, snuggling her first grandbaby

Now it sits in a place of honor in my home. It’s a wonderful sewing collectible, but more than that, it’s a reminder of a treasured friend. With her in my life, I am surely blessed beyond measure. And I hope you have a quilting friend just like mine.

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