Posts Tagged ‘Quilting’

This is a quilt I quilted a couple of years ago for a customer and was reminded of it when I saw it in a local guild show.  This customer is an accomplished art quilter.  She does amazing work.  But her pieces are usually small and non-traditional.  This piece was made for a special exhibit at a group studio she belongs to.  The goal was to make the quilt appear 3 dimensional.

It is a traditional bow tie qD3uilt with specific color placement which gives it the illusion of dimension.  She got the idea from a pattern, of which I do not know the name.  I used a greek key design in the bow tie area and I used a background fill of interconnecting rectangles and squares which gives it a woven fabric texture.

The center is set off with some straight-line quilting and more of texture background fill. I then added interlocking circles in the center.D2

You can really see the quilting on the plain light color backing.  It was hung in the show in such a way to enable me to get a good picture of the back.D4

The quilting is all free motion and ruler work.  This was before I upgraded my A1 with Quilt-EZ system.

I was pleasantly surprised to see it again at the local guild show.  What a treat.


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Marking a quilt is not my thing.  I try to mark as little as possible. I generally mark guidelines for the area I want to quilt.  For feathered wreaths, I will mark the outer and inner circles to designate the inner and outer edge of the feathers.

I needed to mark a white quilt, but my go-to marking tool is white chalk.  I have a fear of using one of the various tools out there for marking quilts.  I’m afraid I won’t be able to get the marks off the quilt.  If it was my own quilt, I would have tried something.  But as I was working on a customer quilt, I was hesitant.

So here is what I did.FMQ Feather Wreath 9

I took a piece of freezer paper twice as wide of the design I needed.  Folded it in half and pressed the shiny sides together.  Creating a stiff but flexible template blank.  I then marked centering lines to assist in getting the circles centers.  I drew the inner, center and outer circles for the size wreath needed. For this quilt, the measurements I used were 8.5″, 5.5″ and 2.5″.

Once the circles were drawn, I cut on the inner and outer circle lines. This created outer and inner circle templates, leaving a large donut the size of the desired wreath. Using the original centering lines, I lined the large outer circle template up within the block.  Centering the template proved difficult, so I added more lines corresponding to the quilt block to assist in alignment.  I pinned the template in place.  If I had used template plastic, I would not have been able to pin through the plastic.FMQ Feather Wreath 6

To center the inner circle.  I found using the donut left from cutting the inner and outer circle as a guide worked best.  I pinned the inner circle in place.

With that done, I used my 5″ circle template to stitch the center spine, knowing my hopping foot would add a 1/2″ to the overall diameter of the stitched circle. I have a set of nesting circles.  If you are using whole circle templates, it would be easier to stitch the center spine then pin the inner circle template in place.FMQ Feather Wreath 2

A few years ago, I took a feather class from Suzanne Early.  She had a tip when stitching free motion feathers.  It helps to draw in the first few feathers.  Otherwise, the first feather can look less feather like.  Brilliant.  But how was I going to do this with my templates?  I used the remaining donut piece to draw my beginning feathers. Then I cut the template along the line of the last feather.FMQ Feather Wreath 4

With the center spin stitched, I stitched the outer feathers next. Then I stitched the inner feathers. Once the inner feathers were stitched, I echoed the inner feathers and stippled in the center.  It is at this point I stopped to cut the threads.  So I was able to stitch the spine, outer feathers, inner feathers, echo quilting and stippling in the center without cutting the thread.  Lastly, I echoed the outer feathers and stippled around the entire wreath.

The first few wreaths took a bit to get used to. But once I got going, the rest went fairly quick. This quilt needed 24 wreaths. FMQ Feather Wreath 1

I love the way they came out.  And, I can reuse the templates.  The only thing I would change is making the outer circle 1/2″ larger than the finished size.  I found my hopping foot would hit the template on occasion. With a larger template, I won’t have to hold the template down for the foot to go over it. I also got too close a couple of times and stitched the template down to the quilt.

It may sound like a lot of work but I believe it saved me time in not having to mark out all blocks requiring wreaths.

What do you think?  Do you like the feathered wreath?


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Monday, Sept. 19: A list of your favorite blog posts you’ve written.

I love my dogs.  They mean the world to me.  To keep them warm while hiking, I made them suits.  They hate putting them on but they keep them warm.

My niece got married last fall.  She wanted me to make her wedding gown. She looked beautiful!


This quilt was a bit of a challenge for me.  There were so many ties.  But I loved the way it came out.

Do you have a favorite post of mine? Which one?


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aka Catherine or Maggie and Sport’s Mom or Tom’s WifeMe2

Who is Cathy? That’s a good question. I’m the youngest of five, all girls. I lost my mom when I was a freshman in high school. When I was a senior, my dad had a massive stroke. He was never well enough to come home. He past away 20 years later.  I don’t tell you this for sympathy. But it makes me, well Me.

I love to laugh and tend to be very sarcastic.  You just can’t take things too seriously all the time.  If you ever have a question about what tone of voice I’m using, assume it’s with a laugh, giggle or smile.

I love to quilt, sew, hike, and snowmobile. Not necessarily in that order, but those are things I love to do.


Tom with Maggie & Sport on South Kinsman


I met my husband when I was 19. He was 28.  He wasn’t sure about dating a teenager but I solved that by turning 20, 3 months later <grin>.  We have been married over 20 years.  I joke, if I went to his senior prom with him, I would have been 9.  My husband is the one who got me into snowmobiling.  I hope we get a lot more snow than we did last year. Can’t wait to ride my sled!



My Sandie

I never had a pet growing up. The way I love dogs, you would never guess.  I was devastated when we lost our first dog Sandie.  She was my love.  I now have Maggie and Sport.  Maggie, I got from a local breeder. Sport, I got as a rescue 2 years later. They are different as two dogs can be.  I love taking them on hikes. To see the joy in their faces and tails, just puts a smile on my face. I believe they dream about hiking when they sleep.


I started quilting in the 90’s. My husband and I had a small engine repair business. My wardrobe consisted of jeans and a t-shirt.  I didn’t really want to make clothes that would get grimy.  But I missed sewing.  I got into quilting when I saw a friend showing off some of her work.  It got me back behind my sewing machine. Which I love!

When we closed the shop in ‘06, I purchase my long arm.  I have been quilting for customers ever since. It took me about 6 months to get to really know that machine. But I’m glad I purchased it. I enjoy the whole process of quilting. From choosing fabrics, to cutting, to piecing and quilting.



Our 12th 4k – Mt Garfield.

2006 is also when I met one of my best friends and hiking teacher, Carol.  We started out hiking the local rail trail and shorter, easier hikes.  We now hike at least once a week, averaging 10 miles a week.  We are very close to finishing the 4000 footers in NH. I was trying to get Maggie and Sport to all of them, but the longer hikes are just a bit much for them.  Maggie is 12 and Sport is 10.

I’m still amazed that I can hike these mountains.  When we first started out, a 2 mile walk on the local rail trail was tough.  Now I’m hiking 7+ miles with 1500 to 3000 feet of altitude gain. Even as I write this, I still can’t believe it.  But I have pictures to prove it.

I have been wanting to participate in a daily blog challenge for a while. I’m going to try to do them all.  I may miss a day or two, but that will be because I’m up on a mountain.  I wrote this earlier in the week.  Today, I will be climbing Mt. Monroe. Tomorrow, I’ll be on Mt. Washington, the highest mountain in the northeast!

Have you climbed any mountains lately? Literally or figuratively?





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2016 button FAL

I have decided to join a couple of blog challenges. One is the 2016 Finish-A-Long challenge.  Similar to many quilters, I have quite a few quilts in various stages of completion.  I have some cut, some pieced, some needing backing, some ready to quilt, and lastly, some needing binding.

So I have chosen 4 projects for the first quarter of the 2016 Finish-A-Long.

DSCN1347The first quilt is a quilt I started many many years ago.  I took a class with Beth Helfter of EvaPaige Quilt Designs using her pattern Syncopated RibbonsDSCN1352.  I’m making this for my husband.  He restores vintage Rupp snowmobiles.  So I chose fabrics based on the colors of his snowmobiles and ones with snowflakes on them.

I had a bunch of flannel plaids I pieced together using the Turning Twenty pattern (affiliate link). This will be the backing.

But I couldn’t decide how to quilt it, so there it sat.  Now I need to choose a quilting design and get it finished.  I always come up with too many ideas that I can’t decide. This will make me decide.

These are two mini quilts that need quilting. I copied these from Leslie Muir-Volpe. She teaches mini quilting in Maine.DSCN1353

Lastly, I have a jelly roll quilt which I wanted to give a bit more too.  I had a matching charm pack.  I made half square triangle blocks to go around the border.  Of course there is not enough to go all around the entire border.  I will need to come up with a design to incorporate them.  This is why it is not done.

Here it is along with a few choices for border fabrics.

I’m looking forward to getting these done!  Wish me luck!


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