A Quilty Holiday House and Cat Quilt-Along #3

Happy weekend everyone!

As everyone finishes up their last bit of holiday sewing, I thought you might enjoy this needlework and quilt store from my little Christmas village:

A Holiday Needlework and Quilt Shop

A Holiday Needlework and Quilt Shop

I’ve been keeping up with Elizabeth’s Catevent quilt-along featured on her blog, Oh Fransson!

This week I made the following cat blocks:

Cat Quilt-Along, Week 3

Cat Quilt-Along, Week 3

On the top row, from left to right are: Max, Amelia, Boogie, Victor, and Monica. The bottom cat is Violet. I haven’t made today’s cat block number 22, Maslow. I will make that block today! Then, we’ll be down to just 3 cat blocks left before joining them together.

For the first time, both of my indoor cat quilt inspectors decided to get a closer look at these intriguing cat blocks. Usually, they’ll inspect edges of blocks or perhaps even walk across the blocks, but this time, the inspectors decided to just hang out on the blocks for a while!

Quilt Inspector Duo

Quilt Inspector Duo

My sister is also following along with this quilt-along. She doesn’t have a blog, but did send me a phone picture of her blocks so far.

Scrappy Cat Quilt-Along

Scrappy Cat Quilt-Along

I love the scrappy look of her cat blocks! I’m thinking of making some themed variations of this quilt using Halloween fabrics, Christmas fabrics, and patriotic fabrics.

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

A Frostman and Santa Bottle Wraps

We’ve been experiencing colder than normal temps for the past week or so like much of the country. This morning while walking my son to school through a frozen fog wonderland, we noticed many beautiful ice formations by Jack Frost. However, we also came across a kid-made formation that we decided to call a “frostman” since it was made by scooping up the frozen fog ice crystals from the ground rather than snow.

He’s a tiny little frostman!

A little frostman!

A little frostman!

I’ve been working on some quick and easy quilty projects to give as Christmas gifts. I recently completed 3 Santa bottle wraps that will add a festive touch to a table setting or any holiday display. The pattern can be found in the book Cottage Charms by Art to Heart. These are Nancy Halvorsen designs so you may recognize her styling in the Santa faces.

Santa Bottle Wraps

Santa Bottle Wraps

Aren’t they cute?

I placed my Santa wraps onto clean, dry 2 liter Coca-Cola bottles. I added a cup or so of dried rice to the bottom of each bottle for a little balance. The mustache is tied around Santa’s head to anchor the wrap to the bottle. These Santas bottle wraps are a great way to use some of your holiday fabric stash and come together in about an hour or so, depending on how much extra detailing you want to add.

Hope you are staying warm!
~Jennifer

Black Tie Boogie Blog Hop!

Hope everyone had a great Turkey day yesterday! Are you ready for the final day of the Black Tie Boogie Blog Hop? If you are new to this hop, you will have fun finding rooster, hen, turkey, and other bird themed projects to celebrate the season.

Thanks to Madame Samm of Sew We Quilt for hosting this hop and to our cheerleader, Vickie!

Click on any of the photos to see an enlarged image.

I made 2 projects for this hop and my hubby made 1 project! The first is my own design and features a silly little turkey trying his hardest to get people to eat chicken or fish instead!

Not a Turkey!

Not a Turkey!

This little wall-hanging was really fun to make! I echo quilted around the turkey, the chicken pot pie table, and the pumpkins. Then, I free motion quilted the words, “Happy Thanksgiving.” A great little scrap busting project!

For my second project, I really wanted a chicken themed quilt to hang in my chicken themed kitchen!! Cluck, cluck! In my stash, I had this pattern called “French Country Roosters” by Clothworks and the fabric to go with it. The finished size is 32-inches by 32-inches.

French Country Roosters

French Country Roosters

I think the fabric is no longer available, but you can still get the pattern for free here.

My hubby got into the spirit of all things chicken and painted this serving bowl at a local paint-your-own-ceramics place during a family outing. He grew up on a chicken farm so he knew that hens and roosters would be a great theme for the platter. And, check out the fun inside!!

Please visit the other talented gals in today’s hop!
Sew Incredibly Crazy
Lixie Makes It
Sew We Quilt

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

Modern Trees QAL Table Runner Finish

Happy Monday everyone!

This weekend, I decided to finish up my Modern Tree QAL project from Christa Quilts!

Instead of making a quilt or a wall-hanging, I opted to make a small table runner and sewed together 5 improv tree blocks with sashing. I used the Snowman Gatherings fabric line by Primitive Gatherings along with some light blue and dark blue fabrics that I had in my stash. The dark blue worked really well in the sashing, but I didn’t have enough to do the binding!!! I had to use another dark blue that is close, but is not an exact match.

For the quilting, I did different types of free-motion quilting on my Bernina from pebbles to little spirals to little rainbow shapes. I echo quilted around each tree and stitched in presents under each tree! Next, I decided to add some handwork using a metallic silver thread and stitched little snowflakes in the blue border as well as an echo quilt on the inside of each tree.

The hand stitching took quite a while so I happily snuggled up with my little guy and we watched a movie together while I stitched. After the stitching was completed, I added some hot fix crystals in clear, light blue, and dark blue for extra sparkle!

Modern Trees Table Runner

Modern Trees Table Runner


Modern Trees Close-Up

Modern Trees Close-Up

This table runner was a perfect project to continue practicing free motion quilting. Unfortunately, my Bernina model is not built to accept the stitch regulator so it makes the FMQ a little more challenging. But, I can see improvements with each project as I become more confident!

I do have more of this cute fabric on hand and plan to make some coordinating snowman placements that I can use throughout the winter.

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

Homespun & Holly Holiday Workshop!

This weekend, I was delighted to attend the 5th annual “Homespun & Holly” holiday workshop at one of my all-time favorite quilt shops, Hollyhill Quilt Shoppe!

The event features 4 different holiday themed projects by some very talented designers! The projects are not revealed until the event. Participants rotate between the 4 designers so each attendee gets to make each project.

My first project station was with Karla Eisenbach of Sweetwater. She had such a fun little tree ornament project called “Embellished Trees.” She provided enough materials for each person to make 5 of these little trees, and I was able to complete 2 during class.

Karla also designed one of my favorite fabric lines called “Mama Said Sew.” I brought my completed project from the Star Surround QAL and asked her to sign the label. Here’s a picture of me and Karla with my quilt featuring her fabric line (I’m the one in the solid black shirt):

Jennifer and Karla with quilt featuring Mama Said Sew fabric

Jennifer and Karla with quilt featuring Mama Said Sew fabric

For my second project, I rotated to Debbie Busby of Wooden Spool Designs. Her project was a cute little holiday felt wreath called “Crazy Hex Ornament.” I finished about half of this project in class and finished the rest at home. Debbie had this great little tool called the “Clover Chaco Liner Chalk Wheel” that we used to draw around our hex template onto the black felt. I must get one!!

I arrived at Anne Sutton of Bunny Hill Designs’ station for my third project. I was so excited to meet Anne because I had just finished sewing on the outer border of her Merry Merry Snowman quilt just the night before. I asked her to sign my quilt label. Her project was my favorite because it featured an adorable little snowman popping out of a mitten called “Cozy Christmas!”

For my last station, I went to visit the cheerful sister duo, Barb & Mary of Me & My Sister Designs! They had the cutest little scissor and bead project for us that only took a short time to assemble. As a bonus, they had a short game for everyone at the table and the top 6 finishers won a free pattern! They also took everyone on a “field trip” to Hollyhill’s companion store across the street featuring Christmas fabrics, quilt kits, and decorations. This store is called Boughs of Holly and is a wonderful place to visit!

Lastly, Brian and Jan, the owners of Hollyhill and organizers of this wonderful event, gave each attendee a special gift. Inside the package, I found yummy chocolates, a snowman ornament, a pattern, thread, and 2 Aspen Frost mini charm packs to make the pattern.

Homespun & Holly Gift Bag

Homespun & Holly Gift Bag

I had such a great time and really hope that “Homespun & Holly” will return in the future. I’d like to thank Brian and Jan as well as the wonderful staff of Hollyhill Quilt Shoppe for making this year’s event such a treat! I’d also like to thank all the talented designers who came to visit and share their special projects with everyone!

I’m so inspired to finish up my holiday sewing and crafting projects!

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

New Mystery Block Plus a Free Class

Hi everyone!

***Spoiler Alert*** In this post, I’m going to share my solution to a paper pieced mystery block. If you are working on this quilt block by Paper Panache and do not wish to see my solution, then click away now! I will post pictures and more about the mystery below.

I wanted to let everyone know about a free quilting class being offered at Craftsy this week. The class is called “Piece, Patch, Quilt: Basic Quiltmaking Skills” presented by Gail Kessler. This class has 11 lessons centered around basic quilting skills from cutting your fabric to finishing your quilt by adding the binding and label.

This month, I am participating in a paper pieced mystery block by Linda of Paper Panache. Linda has some wonderful and intricate paper pieced patterns on her site so go check it out! I’ve got my eye on her snow globe pattern as it would make such an adorable addition to my holiday decor.

I just finished mystery block #70 and will be posting my solution below. I followed the fabric color recommendations pretty closely, but did stick to fabrics already in my stash.

Here’s a close-up of the delicious treat:

Pumpkin Pie Closeup

Pumpkin Pie Closeup

The mystery block finishes at 8-inches by 8-inches. I decided to add a 1-1/2 inch border from dark blue fabric to the sides and the top of the block. For the bottom, I added a 3-inch border and hand-embroidered the name of the object presented in this mystery block.

Finally, I made a little quilt sandwich and did some free-motion quilting on my domestic machine.

Pumpkin Pie Block

Pumpkin Pie Block

Doesn’t that pumpkin pie look delicious? I can’t wait for Thanksgiving to arrive so I can enjoy some homemade pie.

I’m linking this paper pieced block up at Quiet Play’s Paper Piecing Party today.

Happy quilting!
~Jennifer

Happy Halloween and Giveaway Winner!

Greetings and Happy Halloween!

We are still busy handing out candy to the little ghouls and goblins here on the west coast. Here are the pumpkins that we carved last night:

Jack-o-Lanterns

Jack-o-Lanterns

I hope everyone had a safe and fun night of trick-or-treating!

And now for the Wicked Blog Hop Giveaway Winner . . . . . . .
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using a random number generator is . . . .
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Lisa of In the Boon Docks! Lisa, I will be emailing you a copy of my Pumpkin Cat Patch pattern! I really hope you enjoy the pattern, and I’d love to see a picture of your finished quilt!

Enjoy!
~Jennifer

Wicked Blog Hop and Giveaway!

Greetings and welcome to day 1 of the Wicked Blog Hop, brought to us by the wickedly fabulous Madame Samm and our devilishly delightful cheerleader, Wendy!

My project for this Halloween Hop is inspired by my handsome black and white cat and a pumpkin patch:

These two images combined in my creative cauldron, and I developed a wicked recipe for a quilted wall-hanging featuring a cat sitting amongst whimsical pumpkins!

Here’s a look at the completed quilt, called “Pumpkin Patch Cat.”

Pumpkin Patch Cat Completed Quilt Top

Pumpkin Patch Cat Completed Quilt Top

Pumpkin Patch Cat Quilt

Pumpkin Patch Cat Quilt

This little wall-hanging finishes at 11.5 inches x 13 inches and can be made in a day and quilted on your domestic sewing machine. I echo quilted around each pumpkin and the cat. I then quilted stars and a moon in the purple background.

Just look at the wickedly handsome cat!!
DSC_0294

You can add your own details to this pattern very easily! My pattern tester and sister extraordinaire made the cat solid black and added a little witch’s hat:

Black Cat with Witch's Hat

Black Cat with Witch’s Hat

Giveaway Details!
One lucky blog hop commenter will win a free copy of my Pumpkin Patch Cat pattern! I will use a random number generator to pick the lucky winner on Halloween, which is the last day of the hop. Be sure to leave me a comment!

You can also purchase this pattern from my Craftsy shop.

Hop on over to these fellow bloggers today to enjoy some more Halloween treats:
Grammie Q’s
Stitchin by the Lake
Quilted Delights
Buzzing and Bumbling
Vrooman’s Quilts
Life in the Scrapatch
Meadowbrook
Patchouli Moon Studio
The Nosy Pepper
Sew Incredibly Crazy

If you get lost along the hop while admiring the many wicked treasures or if you want to see the full list of participants, just click on the Wicked Blog Hop button located in the right hand pane of my blog.

Grab a tasty goblin brew and enjoy!
~Jennifer

Easy Charm Square Halloween Table Runner Tutorial

With Halloween just a couple weeks away, I thought my living room table needed a little festive decor! I decided to stitch up a quick and easy table runner using a charm pack.

Here’s a look at the completed runner:

Easy Charm Pack Halloween Table Runner

Easy Charm Pack Halloween Table Runner

I’ve created a tutorial if you want to make one of these fun Halloween table runners for yourself. I made my table runner single-sided, but you could easily make it double-sided and extend its use into the Thanksgiving holiday by picking out a second autumn-themed charm pack.

Supplies Needed
1 charm pack or 27 5-inch squares (Boo Crew by Sweetwater for Moda is used in my runner)
1/2 yard backing fabric (or make a double-sided runner)
1/2 yard batting
1/4 yard binding, black
black thread
ruler, rotary cutter, mat, pins, and marking pencil

Halloween Charm Pack and Fabric!

Halloween Charm Pack and Fabric!

Tutorial
Note: Use a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

1. Lay out your charm squares into 3 rows of 9 squares each. Move the charm squares around until you find a color arrangement that you like. Note: If you have a cat “assistant,” you may find your squares re-arranged! See figure 1.

3 Rows with 9 Charm Squares Each

3 Rows with 9 Charm Squares Each

2.Sew 9 charm squares into a row. Press seams open. Repeat for the other rows.

3. Sew the first row to the second row, taking care to match seams. Press seams open.

4. Sew the third row to the completed unit from step 3, taking care to match seams. Press seams open.

5. Cut each right and left end square on both the top and bottom rows so that the squares become triangles. Tip: Use your ruler and marking pencil to draw a diagonal line before cutting the triangles. See figure 2.

Cut End Squares into Triangles

Cut End Squares into Triangles

6. Press the quilt top. The quilt top should resemble figure 3.

Halloween Runner Quilt Top

Halloween Runner Quilt Top

7. Prepare quilt top for quilting by layering backing, batting, and quilt top. Baste with pins.

8. Quilt as desired. I quilted my runner using my domestic sewing machine by using my 1/4-inch foot and sewing square shapes in each charm square.

9. Prepare binding. I like to use 2-1/4″ binding strips and then press them in half.

10. Sew on binding strips. Press. Hand-stitch binding to the backing.

11. Remember to add a quilt label!

12. Optional: Add embellishments such as hot-fix crystals or Halloween themed buttons.

I think this little table runner really adds a festive touch to my coffee table. I added a pumpkin shaped bowl and filled it with chocolate candies. Mysteriously, those little candies seem to disappear quickly in my house!

Halloween Runner Closeup

Halloween Runner Closeup

I hope you enjoy this tutorial! Let me know if you make one by leaving a comment or linking up to your blog. I’d love to see pictures.

With Halloween charm,
~Jennifer

Modern Trees QAL Top Finished and Beach Pic

Happy Sunday everyone!

This weekend, I worked on completing my table runner top for the Modern Trees QAL, hosted by Christa at Christa Quilts!

Rather than making a quilt sized project, I decided to make 5 improv tree blocks so I could have a cute little wintery table runner. I added a dark blue inner border which really complements the trees well. The next step will be to add the backing and do basting. Since my project is so small, I’ll probably do the machine quilting at the same time so stay tuned!

Here’s a look at the Modern Tree QAL table runner top:

Modern Tree QAL Table Runner

Modern Tree QAL Table Runner

Yesterday, I took a drive with my hubby and son to the Oregon Coast to pick up several more Sew Oregon quilt shop hop stamps on my passport. The weather was surprising nice – no wind and about 60 degrees! We took a picnic blanket and ate lunch on the beach near Haystack Rock. The tide was still out far enough that many families and children were exploring the exposed tidepools.

Here’s a pic of the “Needles” rock formations just to the left of Haystack Rock (not pictured).

Cannon Beach, Oregon

Cannon Beach, Oregon

Hope you had a great weekend!
~Jennifer