Fierce Cheetah Mama

Happy spring, everyone! The days are getting a little longer, bulbs are blooming, and birds are singing. I’m very happy that we’re heading into the warmer spring days because it means more hiking and gardening.

For Christmas last year, my sister sent me the Cheetah Abstractions pattern by Violet Craft. This is a foundation paper pieced pattern that usually finishes at 48 inches by 60 inches, but I decided to shrink it down to 75%. I like to print my foundations using Carol Doak’s Foundation Paper because it is really easy to remove after sewing.

I challenged myself to use only fabrics from my stash. The fabric audition process can take a few days and, for this quilt, my hardest decision was the background. I knew that I’d need about a 2 yard piece in a solid or mostly solid color with enough contrast to make the cheetah body pop. I auditioned creams, grays, grunges, and others until I came across a mottled light aqua fabric. Perfect! It reminded me of a partly overcast day.

Once I had the background fabric, I pulled different solids and lightly patterned fabrics to audition for the cheetah body. I like to use Violet’s included color palette to tape small swatches of my fabrics so that I remember which fabric goes with which symbol while paper piecing.

Cheetah Abstractions – fabric selections

I started with the cheetah face first. I was just so eager to see it come to life in fabric! The head section is the most complicated, especially at just 75% size. If you’re new to paper piecing, just go slow and remember to reduce your stitch length. Here’s the start of the cheetah with the pattern for scale.

Over the next few days, I tackled sections of the cheetah body. I sewed the smaller sections and laid them out before joining sections together. It is much easier to fix mistakes this way! Isn’t her expression great? Her gaze is so intense and focused.

I pieced my cheetah fairly quickly in just a few weeks. I put all my other projects (mostly) on hold. Once pieced, I thought about how to quilt her for a week or two. I didn’t want the quilting to detract from the magnificent cheetah mama.

I decided to do some straight-line quilting all over the cheetah face and body using Glide thread in Sand Dune. For the background, I did some free-motion leaves using Glide thread in Cool Mint. I also used 2 layers of Quilter’s Dream Poly Select batting for extra texture!

The double batting does make this small quilt heavy, but I plan to hang it on a wall rather than using it as a lap quilt. For the binding, I used a dark brown fabric for three-quarters of the quilt and then used a piece of the backing for the remaining one-quarter to accent some of the colors from the cheetah.

The backing fabric is called Kenyan Cats by Alexander Henry Fabrics, which I thought worked so well with the cheetah theme.

I really love how this fierce mama cheetah quilt turned out, and I can’t wait to display her on a wall behind my work desk at home.



Quilters for Koalas Mini Quilt Swap

Hi everyone,

In January, I signed up for a mini quilt swap to benefit various wildlife rescue charities in Australia to help them out due to the massive wildfires. Each person who signed up for the swap agreed to donate $10 towards the charities in addition to making a mini quilt featuring an Australian animal.

Sharon (@shoppershaz_swaphost on Instagram) hosted the swap. We had over 250 swappers so she organized us into groups and assigned us each a secret partner.

I made a little koala on a tree for my partner using the Koalas pattern by Elizabeth Hartman. This is a traditionally pieced pattern rather than a foundation paper pieced pattern, and it was really fun to make!

My partner, Debbie, indicated that she preferred blues, teals, and yellows for her colors, and I knew that she liked batiks based on previous posts to her Instagram account.

I do combine batiks with quilting cottons, although some quilters cringe at the idea! I used a really pretty teal batik for the koala body with light blue Grunge for the ears. The background is also a batik in a warm neutral that is lightly patterned. I found scraps in my stash for the tree trunk, leaves, belly, and facial features. The binding is a dark teal batik.

The tree trunk fabric is directional so I had to make sure each piece faced in the correct direction. No drunken trees here with vertical and horizontal stripe mismatches!

I quilted this mini quilt on my trusty Bernina  Activa 145 S, my everyday piecing machine. For the domestic machine quilting, I used the Bernina free-motion foot #24 with Aurifil 50 weight thread in a light cream color. I did some free-motion swirls in the background, some leaf shapes in the leaves, and some ruler work on the koala and tree. If you look closely at the koala body, I added three free-motion heart shapes.

Here’s a look at my completed koala mini that I made for my partner:

Koala that I made for my partner

For my mini quilt, I asked for a koala, but I left the individual pattern up to the maker. I also mentioned that bright modern fabrics would work or more natural colors.

My partner, Sandy, made me a very cute little koala using a pattern by Joe, June, and Mae. She used natural colors and Essex linen for a rich texture.

Here’s a look at the mini quilt that I received:

Koala mini quilt that I received in the swap

This little koala mini quilt is now hanging in my sewing room, along with other minis that I treasure from swaps over the past few years on Instagram.

I’m happy that I was able to contribute to the wildlife rescue agencies in Australia during this swap! If you want to see more mini quilts from this swap, check out the #quiltersforkoalas hashtag on Instagram.



Mt. Hood Elevated Abstractions Quilt

Hello quilters!

I love the landscape of the west, particularly in my home state of Oregon. When I saw the Elevated Abstractions quilt by Violet Craft, I just knew that I had to make it.

This quilt is a wonderful abstraction of Mt. Hood. It is entirely foundation paper-pieced using Pure Elements Solids by Art Gallery fabric and Aurifil thread in 50 weight.

I wanted the quilting to take a back seat to the piecing so I took a modern approach with straight-line quilting using channel locks on my HQ Avante.


Once I took the quilt off the frame, my trusty quilt inspector instantly arrived. How do cats know?


I decided that the quilt needed a pop of bright color for the binding so I dug into my stash and added some orange Notorious fabric by Cotton + Steel. Then, I took the quilt on a 9 mile round trip hike to visit Pup Falls in the Mt. Hood National Forest. Quite the scene for a little photo op! My son took this picture while I balanced precariously on the muddy trail, working hard to keep it out of all that mud!


I really enjoyed piecing and quilting Elevated Abstractions. I need to find the perfect spot to hang it in my home.

Happy quilting! ~Jennifer

Stellar Twist Quilt Pattern and Class!

Hi everyone,

I’ve designed a foundation paper pieced pattern (FPP) called Stellar Twist! This pattern is perfect for beginners who want to learn the basics of FPP techniques. I’m so excited to announce that I’ll be teaching this pattern at a local quilt store, Hollyhill Quilt Shoppe on Saturday, July 29th.

In addition, Hollyhill is having a Grand Opening Celebration at their new location in Wilsonville on Saturday, July 15th. I’ll be attending the celebration, so come out and say hello and register for the class!

Currently, the pattern is only available if you attend the class. At a later date, I’ll likely have the pattern for purchase on Craftsy.

Here is a look at the mini quilt version using the Sunday Supper fabric collection by Sweetwater.

Stellar Twist Mini Quilt

I used my HQSixteen to do some heavy custom quilting on this mini using white Aurifil thread in 50 weight.

Stellar Twist Custom Quilting

Stellar Twist Mini, photo by Hollyhill Quilt Shoppe

The Stellar Twist pattern is very versatile! Add more blocks to create a crib quilt or bed quilt or stitch blocks together vertically to make a table runner. For the class, I’m also making a Halloween table runner sampler and a holiday table runner sampler.

Here’s a look at a Halloween table runner using Moda Grunge fabric. This one will be quilted soon!

Stellar Twist Halloween Table Runner

Next, I will sew the holiday table runner version in time for the meet-n-greet at the Grand Opening Celebration!

Enjoy and happy quilting!


Technicolor Galaxy BOM, Block 1 Color Wheel

Hi everyone!

I’ve been posting regularly on Instagram under the name @nwquiltedcat. I’ve joined a few mini quilt swaps and have been busily working on those fun projects. I have 3 due by late March/early April so I’ll blog about them one my partners have received their packages.

In the meantime, I started working on a fabulous new block-of-the-month for myself. This BOM is called Technicolor Galaxy by Alyssa over at Pile O Fabric. It’s a stunning quilt that you can do in your choice of color scheme. I’m going with the rainbow color scheme because I really love the look right now.

The BOM is designed to teach new skills throughout the year. I’m also participating via the Portland Modern Quilt Guild, which has a discount code for the pattern if you are a guild member. If you are a member, send an email to the guild for the code.

For February, our assignment is to make the color wheel for block 1 using a bias tape applique technique. I’m using Kona Snow for my bias tape and a combination of 2015 Sun Prints by Alison Glass and Kona solids for the color wheel.

This is a quilt-as-you-go BOM so I used a Superior variegated King Tut thread on the top and Aurifil white in the bobbin. I did free-motion quilting using my Bernina.

Here’s a look at the front of my color wheel:

Technicolor Galaxy BOM, Color Wheel

Technicolor Galaxy BOM, Color Wheel

Close-up view of the free-motion quilting:

Color Wheel Close-up

Color Wheel Close-up

I really love how the Aurifil white thread blends into the Kona solid backing in this picture:

Color Wheel Back

Color Wheel Back

This is a vibrant and cheerful quilt that I’m excited to work on over the course of the year in addition to focusing on mini quilts.

Recently, I had some sad news. My best buddy and hiking dog, Brutus, was diagnosed with cancer. It’s an advanced form and pretty aggressive. I met with a veterinary oncologist today, but I fear that chemotherapy treatments will be too expensive. We’re probably going to focus on palliative care for him and give him the best last few months that we can. He’s not in pain currently so that’s great, and I’m also grateful he’s still active and enjoying life.

Happy quilting!

One Block Swoon Quilt

Hi everyone,

I’ve been wanting to make the large Swoon block by Camille of Thimble Blossoms for a while, but didn’t have a specific project in mind. I did use the mini-Swoon block for my project in the Black Cat Crossing swap recently.

I participated in a 5-month Supernova friendship block swap with my new friend, Cindy of What’s One More Project. We have been making and sending blocks to each other since July using the Ansonia fabric line from Denyse Schmidt. October is our last block!

So I decided to make a one block Swoon quilt for Cindy as a thank you. I used two fabrics from Sunnyside by Kate Spain along with Kona Snow for the background and a Kona blue for the binding.

I did some pretty heavy free-motion quilting on my Bernina Activa 145. I had so much fun! On the Sunnyside fabric, I used Stone Blue Denim Aurifil thread #3770 since it has a lovely variegated appearance. I used a cream Aurifil 50 wt thread on the Kona Snow portions.

I did some straight-line quilting around the block edges and in the border. Inside the orange and blue block shapes, I did some more straight-line quilting. I really wanted the background to stand out so I did some swirls and some bird-feather like shapes in the Kona Snow.

Here’s a look at the whole quilt:

One-Block Swoon Quilt

One-Block Swoon Quilt

One-Block Swoon Quilt

One-Block Swoon Quilt

Here are some close-up views of the free-motion quilting:

Swoon Block Free-Motion Quilting Detail

Swoon Block Free-Motion Quilting Detail

Free-Motion Quilting on Swoon Block

Free-Motion Quilting on Swoon Block

For the backing, I used the same Kona blue as the binding except for two strips of leftover Sunnyside fabric and a label. I really like how the stitching shows up on the back!

Swoon Block Back

Swoon Block Back

I’m definitely going to make this block again since it has so many possibilities from a one-block quilt to a pillow to a bed quilt.


Black Cat Crossing Blog Hop + Giveaway

Greeeeeetings, my dears! Today is my day to share with you the creations that I stitched up in my cauldron for the Black Cat Crossing blog hop. Many thanks go to Madame Samm of Sew We Quilt for encouraging people of all skill levels to brew up something to share with us. I also want to thank our fabulous cheerleader, Wendy of Why Knot Kwilt, for organizing this blog hop!

I picked up some of the Black Cat Crossing fabric by Maywood Studios at a local quilt shop that recently opened in town. I love supporting my local shops!

For my first project, I decided to do a wool felt project with just an accent of cotton fabric. One can never have too many pin cushions, right? Sew off I went to stitch up a little witch hat to keep me company in my sewing room. The hat band uses a strip of fabric from Black Cat Crossing. I used black Aurifil thread for the piecing and midnight glitter hologram thread by Superior to add some sparkle to the brim. The finished pin cushion is about 4.5 inches tall.

This pin cushion is designed by Jennifer Clemen of Cottonwood Creations.

My stitching assistants ensured the quality of this little pin cushion:

Tiger likes the witch hat

Tiger likes the witch hat

Cow is planning his revenge

Cow is planning his revenge

Witch Hat Pin Cushion

Now that I had a pin cushion ready to go, I stoked up my cauldron and set to brewing up a special creation using only Black Cat Crossing fabric!

For this project, I stretched my skill levels by creating a mini quilt and by practicing some heavy free motion quilting. I used an Aurifil cream thread for all the piecing and quilting. The pattern is Mini Swoon by Thimble Blossoms.

I modified the pattern slightly so that I could add the Black Cat Crossing border fabric in between the swoon blocks. I’m calling my finished mini quilt, “Black Cat Swoon!”

Black Cat Swoon Getting Inspected!

Black Cat Swoon

Black Cat Swoon and Mini Pumpkins

Black Cat Swoon at the Pumpkin Patch

For the backing, I used left over pieces plus my label:
Black Cat Swoon Back

I just love how this mini quilt looks, and I can easily display it in various locations around the house during the fall season.

For more inspiration, please visit my fellow Black Cat Crossing participants today:
Creatin’ in the Sticks
Living With Purpose
Moose Stash Quilting
The Quilted Cat (you are here)
Lines, Colors, and Art

For my giveaway, I’m offering up 2 fat quarters from Black Cat Crossing. Just leave me a comment on this post for an entry. You get a bonus entry if you tell me how you follow my blog, and I’ll draw a random winner from all comments on Halloween, October 31st. I’m willing to ship internationally. Sometimes WordPress and Blogger do not communicate well together so make sure that I have a way to contact you!

Black Cat Crossing Giveaway

Black Cat Crossing Giveaway

I hope you enjoyed my Black Cat Crossing projects, and that they inspire you to make something beautiful!

Happy quilting,

Wake Up to Kona on the Beach + Giveaway!

Happy Monday, everyone!

Today is my day to share the project that I made for the Wake Up to Kona blog hop, and I’m so excited! I’d like to give a big thanks to Madame Samm, our wonderful hostess and supporter of all things quilty and our great cheerleader, Carol, who inspires us all.

We have great sponsors for this blog hop – Amanda Murphy (author of Quilt Essentials), Robert Kaufman (all those delicious Kona solids), and Aurifil threads that keep us in stitches!

For my project, I started with Kona black as my background color and added this delicious grouping of colors:

Beautiful Kona solids!

Beautiful Kona solids!

The colors are: #110 Peony, #141 Carnation, #1062 Candy Pink, #1066 Cerise, #24 Petunia, #1484 Lupine, #1383 Violet, #188 Hibiscus, #1005 Aqua, #1009 Azure, #442 Capri, and #1064 Caribbean.

Next, I selected the Night Sky pattern by Jaybird Quilts for its striking beauty! This quilt uses her sidekick ruler to create the triangle and diamond shapes that are used in the construction of the quilt. Each starbust (or starfish?) has 4 different shades of a color group.

I pieced the entire quilt top using Aurifil threads, 50 wt (#2000 light sand color and #2692 black color).

I used Superior Threads So Fine #50 in Genoa Gray because I really wanted the quilting to stand out against the black background.

We took the finished quilt to the beautiful Oregon Coast this weekend to take some photographs. I had my hubby and son be my scouting location/photography assistants, and I think they did a wonderful job.

Since my cats aren’t too keen on traveling, my dog (and best hiking buddy) became my cat quilt inspector stunt-double. (Yes, he earned extra dog cookies for his hard work!).

Here are some pictures of my finished Night Sky quilt using Kona cotton solids:

Me and Hubby Holding Night Sky (dog legs too)

Me and Hubby Holding Night Sky (dog legs too)

Night Sky with My Dog (cat quilt inspector stunt-double)

Night Sky with My Dog (cat quilt inspector stunt-double)

Me holding the quilt in the wind!

Me holding the quilt in the wind!

Night Sky Quilt - starbursts resemble starfish!

Night Sky Quilt – starbursts resemble starfish!

Night Sky Quilt - backside

Night Sky Quilt – backside

These last two pictures show the free-motion quilting that I did using the Genoa Gray thread. The quilting alone took me 12 hours! I did a swirly pattern in the black background and did some straight-edge echo quilting in the colored starbursts.

While I was doing the quilting, I ran out of thread – yikes! I called local quilt stores within an hour of my house, but no one had the same thread in stock. Fortunately, I was able to order the thread from Superior Threads directly via 2-day shipping and completed it in time.

I really love how the free-motion swirls accent the Night Sky stars:

Night Sky Quilting Detail

Night Sky Quilting Detail

Closeup of the quilting

Closeup of the quilting

I hope you enjoyed my project and please check out the other bloggers on the last 2 days of the hop!
January 20th
More Stars in Comanche
Buzzing and Bumbling
Quilting Quietly
Grammie Q’s
The Quilted Cat (you are here!)
The Quilting Queen Online
Sew Incredibly Crazy

January 21st
Just Sew Sue
Pigtales and Quilts
Miss Priss Quilts
Charlottes Creation
Childlike Fascination
Renee Luvs Quilting
Cherry Blossoms
Sew We Quilt

I am giving away 4 Kona cotton solid fat quarters! Just leave me a comment to enter. If you follow my blog, let me know how you follow for a second entry. I will ship internationally.

Wake Up to Kona Giveaway

Wake Up to Kona Giveaway

Happy quilting!

A Downton Abbey Table Topper

Hello everyone!

Today, I’d like to share with you a charm friendly table topper that you can make quickly but with stunning results!

For me, it all started with this delicious fat quarter stack of fabrics from Andover’s Downton Abbey line:

The Downton Abbey - Dowager Countess Fat Quarter Bundle

The Downton Abbey – Dowager Countess Fat Quarter Bundle

Yummy! I just love these colors. In my pattern stash, I had a great pattern by Jaybird quilts called Rock Candy. This is a fun table topper pattern that you make using her side kick ruler and a charm pack plus background fabric. I used my Downton Abbey fat quarter stack and a white-on-white print for the background that I had in my stash.

Here’s the completed top taken outside on my porch (the only place without rain!!):

Rocky Candy Table Topper

Rocky Candy Table Topper

I took another picture indoors on my coffee table so you can get a feel for the size of the table topper. On the top of the quilt sits a handmade wooden bowl that my grandfather made for me. He was a master craftsman who passed away last fall so I really treasure this bowl.

Rock Candy with Handmade Wooden Bowl

Rock Candy with Handmade Wooden Bowl

I did all the quilting on my domestic Bernina. For the colored diamond shapes, I echoed quilted a slightly curved diamond shape with purple Aurifil thread.

I did more involved stitching on the white background sections using Superior Threads So Fine #50 in pearl. I straight-line echo quilted around each of the patterned fabric points. I then filled in each white triangle shape with a curvy, snake-like pattern and each white diamond shape with swirls. Next, I did 2 rows of straight-line stitching in the white border, followed by a 3/4-inch section of swirls, and followed by 2 more rows of straight-line stitching.

In person, the stitching really adds some nice dimension and texture!

Rock Candy Quilting Detail

Rock Candy Quilting Detail

Don’t forget to visit the Wake Up to Kona blog hop going on now! My day to display my project is Monday, January 20th.

See you then and happy quilting,