Wednesday, July 16, 2014

4-H Summer Quilt Camp!

Each summer, I get to teach 4-H Quilt Camp in our county.  Held four consecutive afternoons, Moms are invited to come and it's definitely a team effort!   We teach these kids (ages 9 to 14) how to take perfectly good fabric, cut it up, then sew it back together again, with super fun results!

This year, there were 6 kids and their Moms or big sisters who would help to pin and press.  The kids had a choice of three different quilts to make:   (Some of my pictures were deleted, but maybe you can get the idea...)

Cut 10 @ 8-1/2" x 4-1/2" rectangles from 9 different prints, 1/4 yard each.  
Lay out and arrange blocks.

Have Mom help, then take a picture to help you remember the layout. 

Stitch 7 bricks together end to end to make 6 rows.
Stitch 8 bricks together end to end; make 4 rows.

Stitch 3 rows together to make a set.  Use 2 rows of 7 bricks and 1 row of 8 in the center.
Scoot to alternate the middle row (like bricks) and trim off the excess.
 Make 4 sections.  
Karissa stitches her sections

Cut 5 @ 8-1/2" x width of fabric strips (1-1/4 yards) for sashing. Join short ends together.
Measure the width of all the sets, and cut three sashing strips to that measurement, about 56".
 Stitch an 8-1/2" x 56" strip of coordinating fabric between each row
to grow the quilt to a nice twin-size quilt, 56" x 72".
Shelby's 1st quilt!  BRICKS: envelope finish, tied with rainbow yarn.

Using a walking foot

Mom helps...
Straight Line quilting!
Kaimbry's BRICKS:  A good start to a great finish!

Stitch 42 @ 2-1/2" x 42" strips of fabric together, end to end, using a diagonal seam. 

Cut that in half and stitch together (just keep sewing, just keep sewing...);  

 If you lay it out in the hallway, it will reach to the end of the building.
Cut that in half and stitch back together.
REPEAT the process as many times as needed until you get a decent-size, cool-looking quilt!
Lizzy's JELLY ROLL RACE, 52" x 64" quilt top, ready to send to the longarm quilter!

Cut 12 sets each of 3-1/2" x width of fabric light and dark strips (1-1/2 yards each light and dark, or 1/2 yard cuts of six different coordinating prints).  Stitch together into sets of 3 strips, alternating Light-Dark-Light for half, and Dark-Light-Dark for the other half.  Always press toward the dark.  Cut into 3-1/2" sections; PIN to nestle (kiss) the seam allowances (have Mom help), then chain-piece to sew those back together until you have a checkerboard with 3 x 21 squares.

Make 4 sections (just keep sewing, just keep sewing...)
Cut 5 @ 5-1/2" strips x width of coordinating fabric and join short ends together (7/8 yard).
Measure the length of each section, and cut 3 strips to that measurement;
Stitch 5-1/2" strips between the checkerboards for the perfect size lap quilt.
CHECKERBOARD lap quilt top 51" x 63"  
Since Lizzy's Jelly Roll quilt went so fast, she shopped in her Momma's stash to make a checkerboard too!
Lizzy's CHECKERBOARD -  60" x 72"
LOVE, love quilt camp!  I am continually impressed with what kids can create - well, any new quilter, for that matter.  They're pretty much fearless.  The kids had a blast, Moms also learned some great tricks.  Now it's nearly time for the County Fair!  These quilts will look great on display - Blue-ribbon winners, every one!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Ruching around... (& Giveaway)

In a Ruche... Having a Ruche time....   (pronounced "roosh")   Hey, what's a Ruche??

Click on the button below to find out all about Ruching!  It's my latest tutorial of this fun vintage technique made modern over at RBD's Cutting Corners.

Cutting Corners with Riley Blake Designs

And now, it's time to clean up the Sewing Room, yeah!  It's been in a state since April: stuff made, kits cut, classes taught... There's hardly been time to clear a path to the sewing machine!  But all that is about to change, becuase... 
I Quilt for CLEANING!!
My sweet little friend Frannie is here to trade a little labor for my quilting on her latest quilt... and she isn't taking any prisoners... look out, stash!!

Does anyone else find this picture funny/punny??
An old garbage bin from my Dad's farm...
Yep, we're making progress, and it's a cause to celebrate!!

So, while I'm at it, how about a little giveaway? Today's class samples, plus a nice little pile of other  printed ribbons, notions, buttons, an odd pattern of mine and whatnot.  The pile may grow by the end of the week!  ...another man's treasure and all that!
Ruched flowers,  ribbon and other odds & ends
Let me know in a comment what old-timey sewing or quilting or other home-arts technique you like to do, or want to learn.   Winner will be selected on Friday, July 11th after 6:00 pm MST.

Thanks for playing along!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Self-Binding Tutorial

Here is a technique I use mostly for charity quilts that have been tied, for a quick finish.  That is, if I haven't used the "Envelope" or "Knife-Edge" finish first!

Step 1)  TRIM the BATTING even with the quilt top; TRIM the BACKING so it's at least 1-1/4" wider than the edge of the batting. 

Step 2)  FOLD the outside edge of the backing toward the trimmed edge of the batting, then FOLD the folded backing edge over the front of the quilt.  PIN to secure, or work just a few inches at a time and hold with your finger.  STITCH through all three layers.  I like to use a serpentine stitch (mending stitch).

Step 3)  FOLD backing to miter the corner.  PIVOT the needle and continue stitching around the quilt edge until you get to the beginning stitches.  Overlap the stitches about 1/2" inch; backstitch to secure.

I don't use this technique very often - I prefer to apply a double-fold cross-grain or bias binding for better durability - but there are times when a self-binding fits the bill!  And really, as long as it is done neatly, that's what counts (coming from the self-proclaimed "Binding Police" herself  *Ü*).

We'll touch on this technique along with other "Alternate Endings" in my binding class ("In a Bind?") this week at the Small Town Quilt Show  happening right here in my sweet little valley!

(click to see more details↓↓)

And if you happen to be in town... come learn my favorite trick to finish that last mitered seam to get a continuous, non-lumpy binding!
What's your favorite way to finish a quilt?? Double fold? Single-Fold? Straight grain or bias?  Hand- or Machine-stitched? Self-Binding or Knife-edge?  Prairie points, scallops, rick-rack, lace?  Enquiring minds want to know...

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Happy♫♪ (& a Happy Little Giveaway)

Update:  Contest is over and a winner chosen:


Quilts make me happy.
Making quilts makes me happy.
Quilting quilts makes me happy.

Quilting with family and friends makes me happy.
Quilt friends and friendly quilters make me happy.
With my friend Kathy in Nashville at the Grand Ole Opry!
Hadn't seen each other since we were roommates 30+ years ago!!
Eleanor & Sue!
Quilt Man!
Traveling to a quilt show...
On the way to Quilt Mecca
... shopping at the biggest quilt store in America,
at Hancock's of Paducah
... and hanging out in the vendor mall at a quilt show makes me happy!
Working at the AccuQuilt booth

Meandering through the backroads of the Kentucky countryside with a quilty friend
to see barn quilts makes me happy!!

Is this thing working??  Idunno, we'll see...

Observing quilters' amazing creativity makes me happy.
Taluk, a Tentmaker of Cairo, demonstrates his applique' technique
Taluk's favorite quilt
Sue McCarty, with her 2014 HMQS Best of Show quilt, "After Hadrian"
(Saw several more of her previous "Best of Show" quilts at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah)

Learning new quilting techniques from renowned fabulous quilters makes me happy!

Claudia Pfiel with her 2014 HMQS 1st Place Art/Innovative quilt, "Fern Rising" 

Teaching quilty stuff, sharing happy little tips that make other quilters happy makes me happy!

Anticipation of teaching this class again (Small Town Quilt Show next week!) makes me happy!!
Snippets >> Slideshow <<

And as you may have observed in my previous post:
 Sharing a quilt makes me happy!
The perfect picnic, scenery, quilt, and company!

Having an excuse to spend time with my girls  makes me happy.
(Quilt Shop-Hopping - see our adventures HERE<<)

In essence, yep.  Quilting makes me happy.

And finally...
...It made me happy to hang out with the rest of the troupe
of the Home Machine Quilting Show committee last month
even though they made me sing to open the show each morning.
But, you could probably guess that music makes me happy, too.
Last year's theme was "That's Amore!"
This year's theme was "A Quilter's Symphony"
You'll just have to use your imagination...

Starts out with the tune of Beethoven's 5th Symphony and it goes like this...
H.M.Q.S.... H.M.Q. S...
(Then cue the music for the >> Happy Song<<)

It might seem crazy, what I'm 'bout to say...
H.M.Q.S. is my favorite place...
Thousands of quilters wait for this day -
Where quilters share, without a care, baby by the way.
It makes us (Happy...)

Clap along, if you're here, amazing quilts to see.
Clap along if you're here to test-drive a new machine.
Clap along if you're here to shop until you wilt;
Clap along if you're here 'cause you just love to quilt!

Come take a class, learn a brand new skill. (Yeah)
Every quilty thing, yeah, you'll get your fill. (Yeah)
And all our teachers are just "sew" fine. (Yeah.)
Much too much to do, now don't you waste your time,
And you'll be (Happy...)

Clap along, if you're here, amazing quilts to see.
Clap along if you're here to check out the latest thing.
Clap along if you're here to shop until you wilt;
Clap along if you're here 'cause you just love to quilt!

(Insert a little Beethoven's 9th for this part of the chorus: "Freude, shoener" etc.
keeping with the "Quilter's Symphony" theme...)
Friends from near and far now gather; Marvel at the quilts you see!
Passion, fabric & dreams combine to make this "Quilter's Symphony."
(Happy, happy, happy, etc.)
Can't nothin' bring me down, etc.
Because I'm (Happy)

Clap along, if you're here, amazing quilts to see.
Clap along if you're here to test-drive a new machine.
Clap along if you're here to shop until you wilt;
Clap along if you're here 'cause you just love to quilt!
Clap along, if you're here, amazing quilts to see.
Clap along if you're here to check out the latest thing.
Clap along if you're here to shop until you wilt;
Clap along if you're here 'cause you just love to quilt!
(Repeat chorus while dancing around the sewing room, guild meeting, quilt shop or quilt show).

Whew!  Thanks for making it all the way to the bottom of this long post!

What happy quilty things have you been up to lately?
1) Comment here for a chance to win a happy little stack of fat quarters.

2) Let me know how you follow Quiltscapes for a second chance.

3) Sing my version of the Happy Quilters' Song just for the heck of it.  Ü
(Substitute your favorite quilt show/quilt shop for the HMQS references)
Open until Friday at 6:00 pm, MST.

Update:  Contest is over and a winner chosen:


Happy Quilting!!!

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