Monday, March 2, 2015

Pixilated Heart Mini Quilt

Happy Monday, everyone!

Today I want to share with you a quick project I recently finished.  

It uses a new-to-me method of piecing called "fusible patchwork".  My friend Heather Andrus, from the blog Quilt Story, introduced it to me but the original tutorial was created by Elizabeth Hartman of the blog Oh, Fransson!  You can find the tutorial HERE.

I used 820 Quilter's Grid fusible interfacing by Pellon.  
It's 1" printed grid ensures perfectly matched up corners in your patchwork piecing by sewing vertically and horizontally on all the lines!  AND, it eliminates the need to fuss with pinning because all you have to do is fuse your patchwork pieces in place!  It does create some stiffness to your project though so I'd personally only use it for wall-hangings or maybe even a patchwork bag!

I wanted to be able to display this mini all year around so I decided not to make it too Valentine-y :)  I loved working with my low-volume scraps for the background and some favorite bright pieces from my stash for the heart.  The triangle/heart print in light blue, navy, green and pink was the piece I used to base my whole color scheme off of.  I love that print so much that I backed the whole thing with it too and then had to buy some more just to have in my stash! :)

I decided to quilt through all the squares diagonally creating a cross-hatched effect (I love cross-hatching!)  I tried a few different ways of marking the lines - first, with blue painter's tape and then with a water-soluble pen but finally decided I could quilt it just as well by "eyeing it" (since the squares were small enough) so I stopped marking after the first line or two.

It's hanging in my sewing room with a few other minis above my quilted design wall.  I'll show pictures of the whole room one of these days.  I'm waiting to make and hang one more to finish off the space!

I hope this inspires you today to try something new!  
Whether it be a a new method, a new product or a new color scheme!

Happy quilting!
~ Amber

Monday, February 16, 2015

Single Wedding Ring Blog Hop

When my friends from The Fat Quarter Shop
asked me if I wanted to participate in their
Single Wedding Ring Blog Hop 
(which starts today!) I just couldn't resist!

I immediately fell in love with this block
and it came together really easy.  
The hardest part has been deciding on a color scheme.  
This is kind of what I'm thinking so far...

(I'm kind of diggin' the vintage-y feel these fabrics have together.  
I love to mix the old with the new!)

I did end up cutting my squares a little bigger than the pattern instructs 
since I prefer to square up my Half Square Triangles 
(it just makes everything match up so nicely!)  
I cut my squares 3-1/2" and used THIS method for squaring them up.

I've only had time to make one block so far 
but I'm itching to get back to my sewing room so I can make more!
Luckily, I have a retreat coming up in a few weeks 
so I know I'll at least be able to work on it there.

The Fat Quarter shop has so generous provided a free pattern 
for this block which you can find HERE plus a really great how-to video which you can find HERE.  I love the method they show in their video for making HST's too - you should check it out!

Friday, February 13, 2015

Lakehouse Scalloped Print Panel Giveaway Winner

Thanks to all of you who stopped by my blog last week to check out my "Love You" placemat and tutorial!  I had so much fun creating the pattern using Lakehouses new Scalloped Print Panel and my family sure has enjoyed having it around the house the last couple of weeks!  

Oh, and here's a little secret, I plan to use it all year around!  I think the "Love You" placemat is the perfect little detail for leaving sweet treats (or an after-school snack) on the counter for your little ones or serving a special breakfast in bed.  It reminds me of those red "You Are Special" plates my mother had when I was a child.  You know the one's I'm talking about, right?

Well, as promised I'm giving away some of the Scalloped Print Panel so one of you can make your very own placemat!  But before I announce the winner, first, a thank you for sharing all of your sweet Valentine's Day traditions with me!  This has got to be one of my very favorite holidays!  Spending time with the ones you love and thinking of clever ways to show each other you care -  It's the best!  I always give my husband and two kiddos small little presents with a note to say I love them! 

So without further adieu, the winner of the Scalloped Print Panel is:

Jacqueline Auten who said...
I have a special set of heart plates and dollar store wine glasses that I serve a nice breakfast on. I stay up late, like a santa elf, and set up the table with a lace table cloth and everything. When the kids/hubby get up in the morning they get a nice breakfast on a Valentine table

Congratulations Jacqueline!  Please send me an email with your mailing address and I'll get this sent off to you!

I hope you all have a wonderful Valentine's Day weekend!  

~ Amber

The "Love You" placemat tutorial can be found HERE.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Love You Placemat Tutorial + Giveaway

Valentine's Day is just around the corner and I wanted to share this little tutorial for a sweet placemat I designed using Lakehouse Dry Goods' new Sunrise Studio Scalloped Print Panel fabric that's available in stores now.  This scalloped print fabric comes in a variety of colors that all coordinate with their new PamKittyGarden collection (which I am completely in love with!)  Check out The Fat Quarter Shop for a great selection of all of these fabrics (and this is not a paid advertisement :)  I just loooove the Fat Quarter Shop!)

Love You Placemat
Finished size: 17" x 20 3/4"

Materials Needed:
2/3 yd Sunrise Studio Scalloped Print Panel (color: cherry)
1 fat quarter for applique background (red and white heart print)
1 fat quarter for applique (black)
1/4 yard Heat 'N Bond lite (17" wide double-sided fusible adhesive) 
5/8 yard for backing
6" x width of fabric for binding
22" x 26" piece of batting
black thread
Love You template (click HERE for PDF file)

Cutting Instructions:

1.  Cut 4 strips of scallops by first cutting along the printed "log" dots next to each set of scallops.  

This space between the straight edge of the scallops and the log dots is your seam allowance.  

Next, trim these scalloped strips into 4 1/4" wide strips.

Trim two of the strips so they have 4 full scallops plus 1/4" on each end for the seam allowances.  They should measure 4 1/4" x 15 1/2".  Trim the other two strips so they have 3 full scallops plus 1/4" on each end for the seam allowances.  They should measure 4 1/4" x 12".  

2.  Cut four 4 1/4" x 4 1/4" white squares from the remainder of the panel.  

3.  Trim your red and white heart print fat quarter to 12" x 15 1/2".

Assembly Instructions:
1.  Sew the 4 1/4" x 12" scalloped strips onto the short ends of your heart print rectangle with right sides together.  Press the seam allowances toward the scallops.

2.  Sew a white square onto each end of the two 4 1/4" x 15 1/2" scalloped strips.  Press the seam allowances toward the scallops.  Then sew the two strips onto the rectangle unit.  Press the seam allowances toward the scallops.

3.  Trace the "Love You" template onto the paper side of the Heat 'N Bond.

Roughly cut out the words.

Press the words (paper side up) onto the wrong side of the black fabric.

Cut out the words on the traced lines.  Peel off the paper and center the words onto the red heart print rectangle.  Press the words with a warm iron to adhere in place.

4.  Stitch around all the letters using black thread and a straight stitch (about 1/16" inside the raw edges).  Just go slow and you'll be fine!

Finishing Instructions:
1.  Make a quilt sandwich with the placemat top, batting and the backing fabric.  Quilt as desired.  I had my neighbor, Cathy Barney, quilt it for me using Mono Poly invisible clear thread.  She did an all-over squiggly design that doesn't compete with the words or scallops.  I love it!

2.  Trim the placemat (and any excess batting or backing) leaving 3/4" between the tips of the scallops and the edge of the placemat.

3.  Bind the placemat using two 2 1/4" x width fabric strips and it's ready to use!  Serve up some sweet little goodies to your loved ones and they'll (for sure) feel special!

This quick project is perfect for Valentine's Day or any day that you want to say I love you!  

I've got some extra scalloped fabric that I would LOVE to share with one of you so just leave a comment below telling me about any Valentine's Day traditions you have in your family and I'll pick a winner this weekend!

~ Amber

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Modern Sewciety

At The International Quilt Market in Houston last October, I met the darling Stephanie Kendron who is the founder and host of Modern Sewciety (a series of sewing/quilting related podcasts).  

(Left to Right: me, Stephanie and my roomies: 

On Modern Sewciety, Stephanie chats with friends in the industry about all sorts of topics.  Recently I enjoyed listening to her chat with "The Butlers" (as in Amy of Amy Butler fabrics and sewing patterns and David Butler of Parson Gray fabrics) who are so down-to-earth yet so inspiring!  

Our chat aired last Friday.  We talked about how I got started in the industry, Market, the book, what I'm up to now...  You can click HERE to listen. 

I'm relatively new to the podcast scene but am glad I found Modern Sewciety because I often find myself thinking it's too quiet when I sew!  Do you listen or watch anything when you sew?  Suggestions??? 

Be sure to stop by to enjoy all of Stephanie's podcasts!

Happy quilting!
~ Amber

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Red and White Farmer's Wife Finished Quilt + Stats/Fabric Requirements

Hello happy people!
Today I'm excited to share with you my finished Farmer's Wife Quilt!

It's been away for a while...being hand quilted by a group of ladies in Provo, UT that use their proceeds to buy supplies for patients at the State Hospital.  It was gone for about 8 months.  I got it back mid November-ish and finished binding it over the holidays!

 It really meant a lot to me to have this hand quilted.  I wanted it to have that antique feel and because I know myself and know that realistically I would never actually do it I decided to hire these ladies!  I'm so happy that the money went to a good cause and the money was well worth it (a fraction of the cost of what it would be to have it custom, machine quilted - it was $200 for those of you dying to know :).  

They quilted in the ditch around each piece and they even quilted the dashed lines on my border fabric - which initially they said they wouldn't be able to do.  I was thrilled when I picked it up and realized I wouldn't have to do any more quilting myself!  Whew!  Big sigh of relief :)

Some people have asked how much fabric they would need to make something like this and that's really hard to answer since it's so scrappy.  I just started off with a dozen or so fat quarters and then added more when I needed some variety.  Scraps are perfect for this project since you only need a little bit for each block.  Below are some rough numbers for everything besides the blocks - since I did do my sashing a little different than the Farmer's Wife book instructed. 

Finished Quilt Size: 79" x 100"
Finished Block Size: 6"
Number of Blocks: 83

Fabric Requirements 
(I've included a little extra in the yardage to allow for 
shrinkage and squaring up.  WOF = width of fabric).

Number of Sashing Strips: 192 total
(You will need 2 yards of 42" wide fabric.  
Cut 6 1/2" x WOF strips, subcut into 2" x 6 1 /2" rectangles).

Sashing Squares: 110 total
I did white with a red print for the 82 center squares and
solid white for the 28 outside edge squares (the white outside edge squares are eventually trimmed off - creating triangles - before sewing on the inner border fabric).
(You will need 1/3 yard of white with red print fabric and 
1/4 yard of solid white).

Inner Border: 8 strips
(You will need 1/2 yard.
Cut 2" x WOF strips).

Outer Border: 8 strips
(You will need 1 3/4 yards.
Cut 6 1/2" x WOF strips).

Binding: 9 strips
(You will need 3/4 yard.
Cut 2 1/2" x WOF strips).

Backing: 7 1/2 yards
(cut into 3 pieces, 42" x 90" each)

I hope that answers some questions for those of you just getting started!

Here's a few more pictures of mine...

My backing is just a vintage-y red and cream print.


I love it.  And although you may not see me using too much red for the next little while, this is one of my greatest finished quilts.  I hope my grandmother (Gigi) will be proud :)

Happy quilting!
~ Amber

PS.  You can click on the Farmer's Wife label on my sidebar for more posts related to this topic.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Vintage Vibe Book Winner + a Sew Along

Wow!  You guys sure know how to make a girl feel good!  Thank you for all your sweet comments about Vintage Vibe.  It was fun to hear what your favorite projects are!

I'm happy to announce that Anita is the winner of the autographed copy of Vintage Vibe.  She loved Big Baby (yay!!!)  Anita, I just sent you an email so I hope to hear from you soon!

Thanks to everyone for participating in the giveaway and again - for being really, really AWESOME!  For those of you who still need a copy of Vintage Vibe you can ask your local quilt shop or get one online HERE, HERE or HERE.  And for those of you who already have a copy, I would love it if you took a minute to post a review on Amazon - if you feel so inclined :)  I love reading what you lovely people think about it!

Well, I'm off to a little sewing retreat this weekend and I plan to finally finish my scrappy Skipper blocks that I started a couple of months ago.  

I've invited all my Instagram friends to sew along with me and want to invite you too!  If you post a picture on Instagram, use the hashtags #skipper and #vintagevibebook.  Or if you're not on Instagram be sure to upload pictures of your projects to the Gigi's Thimble Flickr Page (which is sorely lacking right now :).  I'll be checking it often!

Happy quilting friends! 
~ Amber