November 19, 2015

Guest Blogging - Joyeaux Noel Ornaments

Hello, Friends!
Are you starting to get ready for Christmas?
I have a new quick and easy idea
for some pretty ornaments.

You can find a free tutorial for
Joyeaux Noel ornaments on my guest blog post

I was captivated when I first saw photos
of French General's latest line of Christmas fabrics,
Joyeaux Noel, months ago.
When I saw them in person, I was even more drawn to them...
the palette is subdued, with an Old World vibe.

The vignettes are charming and varied.
They just call out to be made into something for sharing.

I made up a set of ornaments in no time,
and I plan to make lots more of them soon.

I hope you'll make some lovely ornaments
this Christmastime.

{In light of the recent attacks in France,
these projects have even more emotional appeal for me.
My heart goes out to those who were lost or injured.}

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October 9, 2015

Welcome - My Final Farm Girl Vintage Block

Hello, Friends!

Today I'm going to wrap up my Farm Girl Vintage series
with the beautiful block called Welcome.

If you have the Farm Girl Vintage book,
you will know that this is not the "last block" in the book.
They are listed in alphabetical order,
and there are a few more blocks after this one.

I decided to make this block last,
because it looked so much easier to construct
I figured I would finish with a quick and easy block.

{Insert uncontrollable giggles here.}

Well...for some reason,
I found this block to be kind of difficult to make.
I enjoyed stitching it, but, when I measured
my finished block, it was about 1/4" too big!!!

I just couldn't cut off those tips and be happy.
I thought and thought about it, but...that would not work for me!
So there was only one thing left to do...
make another block.

This time I paid careful attention to the size
of each unit within the block.
I measured and trimmed,
and I noticed that my piecing was not as good
as I thought, along the way.
There was a bit of crookedness here and there.

Even this time, being soooo careful,
my new block had some seams that didn't line up perfectly.

That's okay...I really loved my new combination
of fabrics, and I learned how to be more precise along the way.
In the end, my new block was just about the perfect size.

Guess what I found,
literally the day after I finished this block!

{You'll never guess...I'll have to tell you.}

I saw a post at Fig Tree Quilts, featuring this awesome,
brilliant, sweet pattern, made up from this same block!
This pattern was being featured as Fig Tree Quilts is bringing back
some of their most popular fabrics, in Strawberry Fields Revisited.


Star Crossed Pattern by Fig Tree Quilts

I really love the way people create new projects using
genuine vintage-style blocks that have been around
for generations.

The finished block is the same...
but there have been so many creative minds
working to make this block their own way, their own style,
for their own life and family.
That is the appeal that quilting has for me!

Now that I've practiced this lovely block...
no matter what it's called...
I hope to make more of them.
I think I'll make this slightly super-sized one
into one of the Farm Girl Vintage pot holders.

It will be a pleasant way to remember the Farm Girl Vintage sew along.

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October 5, 2015

More Farm Girl Vintage Blocks...Winter Star and Wooly Sheep

The Farm Girl Vintage sew along
is almost finished.
All over blogland, people are posting
their progress and finishing their quilts!
It's been sew exciting, hasn't it?

Today I'm sharing two more of my blocks.
In the true spirit of "nearly finished"
may I present my Wooly Sheep block?

{I have not yet embroidered the skinny little legs.}

I decided to make my lamb grey and white.
I love his sweet little gingham face.
And that little tail is hilarious!

He is just so fluffy and chubby looking!

I am really fond of the grassy green that I used,
one of the last bits of that piece from
Fresh Air, by American Jane.

I think a whole flock of these would be an adorable
baby quilt - for either a boy or a girl.
Counting sheep puts little ones to sleep!

The other block is quite different...
a touch of elegance called Winter Star.
I used the same gray print for the sheep body,
in the inner star points, but it's got a whole new vibe.

I am truly in love with this beauty!
I enjoyed making it, every step of the way.

It was a bit of a challenge to line up
the little pieces just right.

I think the colors are just right for wintertime...
icy blue, frosty white, and cardinal red.

This is definitely one of my favorite blocks
from the book...but when I take them all out to create my quilt,
I'm sure I'll find lots more "favorites" all over again.

Come back soon to see my last Farm Girl Vintage block!
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September 29, 2015

Sunday Morning, Sunny Sunflower, Tumbleweed and Water Turn Blocks - Farm Girl Vintage

Hello, Friends!
We're coming to the conclusion of the 

This week the last two blocks are being featured.
I can't believe it, but...I have actually made
every block in the series.
There are a few I haven't shared yet,
but I will eventually post about those, too.

For this edition, allow me to introduce four fun blocks.

{Well, at least three of them were fun.}

First, here's the block named Sunday Morning.

This is such a pretty block.
Never mind that I lost a couple of points in the center somehow.
Sundays are all about relaxation, right?

If this block grew up to be a mug rug,
it would be fun to use this little red cocotte for some oatmeal
on a Sunday morning.

{I just learned that word...cocotte. I'm going to use it at least once a week. 
The word, not the thing.}

The next block might just be the most understated beauty
in the book, in my humble opinion...Sunny Sunflower.

This block was truly a pleasure to make,
and I can really see myself making a bunch of the 12" blocks someday,
for a larger project like a table runner or a quilt.

I really adore this flower...ever since I bought a big bunch
of cut sunflowers for my sister, as a housewarming present.
She was living in New Jersey, 
and I found the sunflowers at a local farm stand. 
They looked fabulous on her new kitchen island, in a simple white pitcher. 
It was a long time ago...maybe 20 years...
before I ever knew about blogging, or I would have had a photo to share.

That's okay...this block reminds me of that day whenever I see it.
Isn't that what a great quilt is all about?

As much as I loved making the sunflower...ahem...
the Tumbleweed block was not so much a joy.
Maybe I was tired, but I found this one a bit tricky.

It turned out fine, but there is a little note in the margin
of my book, reminding me that there are plenty of other
cute blocks that are more fun to construct.

{It actually says, "Not as enjoyable to sew...not sure why."}

I made a note for every block in the book...whether I loved it, liked it, or whatever I thought about making more of them.
The Tumbleweed block came out very nicely...
so I'm glad that's over!

The last block for today's post is called 
Water Turn.
I think this is a new block to me, and it's really pretty.

I kind of wish I had not put red and orange together
in my block, but sometimes it's good to just try a new thing.

I like the "open" feeling of this block,
with lots of background fabric in it.

You get a lot of practice making Flying Geese
for this block. I am growing to love those FG's more and more.

Come back soon for some more Farm Girl Vintage blocks...
only a few more to go!

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September 26, 2015

Oh, My Stars - Simple Star, Spring Star, and Summer Star

OK, I admit it...I'm starstruck!
The Farm Girl Vintage book is filled with magical star blocks.
I've got some new ones to share today.

It's always good to start out simple, right?
The Simple Star is truly a basic block,
but it comes out so differently, depending on the fabrics selected.
For mine, I selected a gray and green palette...
a bit of a modern departure from my other blocks.

I really LOVE the lime green with the gray,
and the tiny dash of red is just right.

Could those wee little strawberries be any sweeter???

The next block is called Spring Star.
This is a new block to me, and I love how complex it appears,
but the construction is very easy.

I liked the palette in the book, so I copied it.
Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?

I bought some new bowls to use in my blog posts as props.
Don't they look pretty with these colorful fabrics?

{They also come in handy keeping my little scraps close at hand.}

After the Spring Star comes, of course, Summer Star.

Something really fun happened, as I was stitching this block.
I use my little mini design boards that I learned to make
from this Lori Holt YouTube video.
Now I know why it's called a "design board"...
I found some alternate block designs that I'll have to try someday!

Here's how the block would look without adding the little white corners
to the outer corner squares.
Oh, I was soooo tempted to leave out 16 tiny pieces!

And here's what it looks like, if the hourglass segments are rotated.
The square surrounding the navy blue center is yellow now.

Enough daydreaming...
I stitched up the block as written, in the end,
and it's as lovely as a summer evening.

Now that I'm down to the last few blocks of the Farm Girl Vintage
sew along, I reverted to my earlier palette of primary colors,
with a pop of navy blue.

I'm glad now that I stuck to the original design for this block,
but someday I'll play around with the alternate ideas.
Come back soon for more sewing inspiration!

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