Monday, November 28, 2016

Don't Ever Say Never

I have always admired Cathedral Window Quilts. But, I have NEVER had the intention of making one or even trying the technique.

I was recently asked to make a Cathedral Window pillow for someone and I reluctantly agreed. Here is my first attempt.

I am somewhat pleased with this first attempt, although I have a lot of practicing to do before I am completely pleased and ready to make one to give away. There is a lot of pressing that needs to be done, and it needs to be done accurately. My mistake was trying to rush the process and take short cuts.

Before starting this, I wisely decided to use scraps for this first attempt. I like these fabrics and they were left over squares from a previous project. I'll put this pillow in the spare room that has a coordinating quilt. Where my points don't quite meet, I may add some embellishments like a pearl or button. Or, I may just leave it as is to keep me humble. :-)

I used a pressing template from Erica Plank- Unseen Hands that works well, if you take your time and do as she suggests. She also has a video on her Facebook page that was helpful, and if you decide that you want to make a pillow or quilt, I suggest you watch it. I should have done that. :-)

I seriously doubt that I will ever make a Cathedral Window quilt, but stay tuned for another pillow or two.

Check out other quilt projects being worked on today.

Go to Judy L's Patchwork Times


Monday, November 14, 2016

Design Wall Monday

I have been busy!

While finishing the QOV projects for Friday's presentation, I packed up a bunch of kits so I'd have them ready at the spur of the moment.

I started working on one of those kits and because it was so easy, I finished the top last night.

I've got backing fabric ready for this as well as the binding. WooHoo! I think I'll go ahead and get it quilted and bound right away so I have QOVs ready as soon as they are needed.

I worked on this in between grading essays today. Trust me, I needed the break.  :-)

I've got to get busy thinking about upcoming classes. Any ideas? What new and exciting patterns have you seen lately that would make a great class?

Check out what other quilters have on their design walls today.

Go to Judy L's Patchwork Times


Sunday, November 13, 2016

A Quickie

I sure hope you didn't expect anything vulgar from that post title.  hehehehe

After Friday's QOV presentation, one of the recipients told me that he was going to give his quilt to his dad, who is a WWII veteran. While we talked, he told me that his did is wheelchair bound and
loves to sit and just enjoy the people around him and life in general. I decided that I could not let the recipient give up his quilt, so I told him that I would make a quick lap quilt in the appropriate size for his dad. He said that I didn't have to do that, but I insisted. I used a one-yard cut of Star & Stripes by Deborah Edwards for Stonehenge and did some quick straight line quilting. It's bound and ready to go. I'll make a proper QOV soon for the dad, but this will work in the mean time.

Friday's presentation depleted my patriotic/QOV stockpile so I started a couple of new ones. I'd already had them kitted up so it was easy to just pick up and sew. It has been a good break from grading papers this weekend.

I'll post pictures tomorrow of what I've completed.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

THIS is why I make quilts

Yesterday was a really good day! I was honored to be part of the Veterans Day Assembly at Monroeville and it was wonderful. 

A couple of young ladies from the junior class, Addi and Tabitha, worked closely with an elementary teacher, Mrs. Dreschel, to organize the assembly. The girls put together a neat video thanking veterans, designed the program that was distributed to everyone, and they presented a gift to the Monroeville VFW. There was a lot involved in the program itself, including a breakfast for the veterans, a lot music by the high school band, choir and various elementary classes,and even a coloring and essay contest for the elementary school. The winners of the essay contest read their papers and a senior young man spoke about the impact of Veterans day on him. Both of his parents are veterans and his speech was very touching. Also included was a Quilts of Valor presentation. That's where I come in the picture.

I'm sure you long-time readers remember when I made quilts for a couple of students who were involved in a very serious accident in January of 2015. You can read about them HERE

Heart Quilt - 2.5"  squares - Signature Quilt

Heart Quilt - 2.5"  strips - Signature Quilt

You might also remember that during her recovery from a traumatic brain injury, I tutored Allie. I loved working with her!

Allie is now a sophomore and doing amazingly well. This past summer, Allie and I talked about ways for her to give back to the school community (she calls them her school family), for all of the prayers, thoughts, help, and support that they showed her. She asked what kind of volunteer stuff I do and her eyes lit up when I told her about Quilts of Valor.

We got right to work to see if she'd be permitted to have the presentation at school during the Veterans Day Assembly. Once she got the approval, she needed to determine who, within the school family was a veteran and if they would accept a quilt. While she did that, I started sewing! When it was all said and done, five quilts were presented during the assembly and five others were presented in private.

Here are a some pictures of yesterday's presentation. (Since I was involved in the presentation, I want to thank Allie's mom Wendy, and the art teacher, Laurie, for sharing their pictures with me.)

I was so happy for Allie. I know she was nervous, but you could not tell it from the way she handled herself. I was amazed at how well she did. I don't know if this will work, but HERE is a link that includes a video of her speech.

While Allie and her friend Chloe covered the veterans, I called them from the audience and provided information about their years of service. It was very emotional for the veterans, many who thought that they didn't really do anything special and that they didn't deserve any special recognition. We beg to differ! They ARE special!

Of course there were a few chuckles too, especially when I'm sure Mr. Sparks wanted to make sure the girls did not step on his healing foot. 

It was very emotional to watch as the girls draped the quilts over the shoulders of the veterans and told them, "We have your back and we have you covered. Thank you for your service to our country." Allie's family is good friends with the last recipient (Mr. Sparks), and she was smiling as she picked up his quilt.

This might be my favorite picture of the day. I was totally blown away when there was a spontaneous standing ovation after the final quilt was presented. And the best part of that is the fact that it was the students who stood first and applauded. I love it when I see the positive in kids and not only the negative. It made me smile, and I was sure to tell the students how proud of them I was. 

There were pictures and videos posted on Facebook about the ceremony and that was nice to see. (I am so over the political negativity!) And I was surprised this morning when I went to a guild meeting and had one of the members show me that there was an article in the local paper. Here's a link to the article in the Norwalk Reflector :-)

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday Works

I have done nothing to The Wave quilt.

You can read about this quilt HERE

I have made some progress on the Sundance quilt and will post a picture tomorrow or Sunday.

Hopefully by then I'll have The Wave completed as well as a couple other QOVs.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Design Wall Monday

I got a little quilting done this weekend, but not all that I wanted to. Unexpected errands and visitors slowed me down, but all is good. I'm not worried that I'll get the quilts done that have deadlines because I'm ahead of schedule anyway.

Of course I started piecing something new, but not just because I wanted to. I am going to be part of a Quilts of Valor presentation on Veteran's Day and I'm making this quilt for a special recipient.

The pattern is called The Wave and I'll be adding borders as well as some appliqued stars. I love how this looks and so does Jack. It's quite easy to put together and I just may find myself making at least one more because I think it would make a great gift. Here's a picture of the original quilt.

While working on this, I've been sewing a project using the leader and ender technique.

I've had the Sundance pattern for quite some time but just never found the perfect fabric. I decided that I wanted to find fabric for this quilt and make it. I think it would be a really good class project for new quilters who want to make something fairly good size (55" x 70") and want to make it quickly.

On Saturday, I made a quick trip to M&E Quilt Shoppe and took the pattern with me. I wanted to show Mabel and Ethel so they would be on the lookout for fabric that would fit the pattern. 

Imagine my surprise when I walked past the cutting table and saw that Judy was cutting fat quarters of some new fabric that just arrived that would be perfect for the quilt! The picture below is not great, but here are the fabrics I'm using. It's Plush by Sandy Gervais for Moda.

Since the picture is so bad and I want you to see how perfect it is, here are better pictures from Moda's website.

This is the main/focus fabric.

This is the frame fabric around the small center.

Here's the small center piece.

Here's the background, which is between the pieced blocks and the large focus fabric.

And this will be cut on the bias and used for the binding.

Everything is cut and the pieced blocks are just about done minus the framing. Again, it's a crappy picture, but you can see how easy it is and how beautiful the fabrics are.

I'll do some quilting after school tomorrow (I want to get Jack's quilt done and load another one), and then work on the borders to the Wave quilt and finish these blocks. I'm also going to try to get the binding sewn on to Jack's quilt so I can be hand stitching the binding down Tuesday night. It's good to have goals, right?  :-)

What are you working on today?

Check out the eye candy at


Friday, October 21, 2016

Friday Finishes and a Meeting

I've got quite a bit of quilting to do this weekend because I was able to finish some quilt tops. Yay!

 I think Jack's quilt will be the first one quilted. :-)

Next up will probably be this Strip Shenanigans quilt I finished yesterday for the Flying Horse Farm. These are the blocks I was using as leaders and enders Sunday. I finished the blocks when I got home yesterday and put them together very quickly. The binding will be scrappy, made from misc. strips from inside the blocks. This quilt measures 54" x 64", which is perfect for the beds at the camp. Wait a minute! I just realized that I don't have to quilt this. I just send the top and binding. Yippee!  

These two Quilts of Valor quilts are ready for quilting and I have the bindings ready for both, which always speeds things up for me.

I think I'll be a busy gal this weekend!

Yesterday I mentioned that I was going to share some details about a dinner I had Monday night. Here you go...

Have you ever "met" someone on-line and chatted with them for a long time but never met them in person? I've been commenting on Scott Fortunoff's Studio e Blog for quite a while as well as e-mailing back and forth about a variety of quilting subjects.

In case you don't know, Scott is a fourth generation textile executive. He is part of the Jaftex Corporation which includes Studio e Fabrics, Henry Glass & Co., AE Nathan, Blank Quilting Corporation, and Fabric Editions, Inc. He is one busy guy!

A while back, Scott send me an e-mail thanking me for being a loyal reader of his blog and a consistent commenter. I'm just thrilled he didn't think I was a stalker! :-) Anyway, in his e-mail he wondered when we would meet in person. I chuckled to myself thinking that I should suggest to Jack that we make a trip to NY so we could enjoy the sites and I could meet Scott. Instead, I responded with asking if he ever ventures west to Ohio. As it turned out, he had a meeting scheduled near Cleveland in mid-October and wondered if I lived anywhere near there. Well shoot, I live just about an hour from Cleveland so we made tentative plans to meet.

Those plans were solidified; and after flight delays on his part, we met Monday night for dinner.

I was thrilled to also spend the evening with Karen Junquet, the art director at Jaftex.

These two are very talented, energetic and fun! We talked about a ton of things - some quilting, some not. We laughed a lot, and just had a good time.

Scott asked me how many quilts I've made. (Jack has asked me that too and when I told Scott that my husband asks me that, he says that it's a man thing to want to "know the numbers.") I had to admit that I don't know for sure, but it's a bunch. I know how many I donate because I keep track for tax purposes, but I have not really kept track of the others. I know I should, but I just don't do it. But, after these conversations, I've decided to get at least a rough estimate. I've made bed quilts, wall hangings, lap quilts, table runners, class samples, baby quilts, etc. and I will  get numbers for each of the categories and then a total. I'm going to try to do this soon, but we'll see. 

Scott, thanks for the invitation and meeting. I look forward to our continued conversations. Now I have to get busy and quilt!

I'm linking up to

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Two Quilts at the Same Time

I love it when I can be really productive!

I've finished the 80 blocks for the QOV project I started working on Sunday, and I've sewn them into rows. The rows are paired up and sewn, so I just have four more seams and this will be ready for quilting. Yay!!

I really like how this has turned out; and I am really happy to have been able to use a lot of scraps to make this quilt. The blocks finish 8" and the layout is 8 x 10, so they finished quilt will be 64" x 80". Perfect for a QOV!

I will make this quilt again, using strips and scraps as originally planned. Check out Monday's post HERE to see how the blocks will be pieced differently and the layout will change.  

I have to get my husband, the official "quilt namer" thinking about what to call this quilt. I have a few ideas, but he always comes up with some winners. 

While I was finishing up these blocks and sewing the rows, I was piecing some blocks for another Flying Horse Camp quilt. I love to chain piece when I can and it worked out perfectly to be sewing blocks into rows at the same time I was making new blocks.

I have six of the 30 blocks pieced for the next quilt! Yippee!

Check back tomorrow when I share details about the dinner I had Monday night with a couple of really fun people.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Design Wall Monday

Jack's quilt is sewn together and I just need to find time to quilt and bind it. I am very pleased with how it turned out and think I found the perfect backing fabric. It is white with black/grey words on it that all relate to music. (Jack sings in a couple of groups, has played the guitar, and loves to play the keyboard with the grandkids.) I have not shown him that fabric because I want it to be a surprise.  :-)

I've been playing with some new ideas that use pre-cuts (fat quarters, strips, charms, etc.) and this is one on which I'm working now.

I originally made this using strips (2 1/2" x WOF). Two jelly roll strips makes two opposing blocks. Easy Peasy!  :-) I like the looks of that, and it made piecing go very quickly. (I REALLY like that!) Here is an example of opposing blocks. 

The quilt becomes very scrappy and unlike the red, white and blue quilt above, I alternated the blocks so there are no matching block seams. By doing that, it completely changes the look of the quilt. I can't find the picture of the quilt right now, but I think you get the idea. Here's a sketch of the quilt with the blocks rotated.

Saturday evening, I was gifted a big piece of neutral fabric (3+ yards of a cream-on-cream print) and I thought it would be a perfect fabric for a QOV project. I'd been playing with the math to make the above blocks using fat quarters so I decided to pull a bunch of red and blue fat quarters (and scraps) and use the new fabric too. I used the neutral in all of the blocks and just made blue and red blocks. I sketched before I sewed and I'm glad I did. I didn't love how it looked to rotate the blocks. I decided to NOT make opposing blocks and line the blocks up straight across the quilt. I think it creates a fun chain-like effect. In order to make sewing the blocks together easier, I pressed all the blue blocks to the rectangle and all the red blocks to the pieced units.  Very quick to piece, and I like the result.

I have 6 of the 10 rows I'll need to make this the size I need for a QOV, and I have plenty of fabric to do that. I'll finish piecing this later this week and it should be ready to use this for the QOV presentation I will be making on Veteran's Day at school. I think I already have enough for the presentation, but I have to double check numbers. Besides, I like to take a couple of extra quilts just in case there was a mix up in the count. I don't ever want to be short and have someone not receive a quilt! :-)

What's on your design wall today?

Check out the eye candy at

Judy L's Patchwork Times


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tip Tuesday! - Challenge

"Tip Tuesday!" - Challenge
I love learning new things and then sharing that knowledge with my quilting friends. So, every Tuesday (or most Tuesdays!) I'll provide some tips, hints, tricks, tutorials, shortcuts, etc. that I've learned over the years and share them here on the blog.

"Tip Tuesday" will be a collection of information about a wide variety of subjects garnered from a large variety of sources. I am not an expert by any means and do not take credit for being the great wizard behind all of these hints and tips. I will gladly give due credit whenever possible.

These tips will be archived and accessible to you just by clicking on the "Tip Tuesday!" tab above.

Read, enjoy, and be inspired!


It's Tuesday, and I have a Tip Tuesday! post. I know that I've been very lax with my Tip Tuesday! posts, but I've simply been making the decision to prioritize things and not stress out about making sure I have something to post every week. I will continue to have Tip Tuesday! posts, but it probably won't be done weekly.


I know that I've discussed challenging yourself in the past, but this time I want you to consider challenging yourself in a bit different way. Do some research and join a swap on line, with members of your sewing group, or with just a couple of friends. To make the swap easier, find a theme or cause and use that as your starting point.

For the past two years, I've participated in the Teal Mini Swap hosted by Beth Helfter of EvaPaige Quilt Designs. This swap is an annual event intended to raise awareness of ovarian cancer, raise funds for The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, and give quilters a challenge to make something and send to another quilter. This swap costs $15 to join, but that's because it's a fundraiser. You can join or organize a swap that is free.

Each participant of the Teal Mini Swap received a small piece of a specially selected teal fabric. (This year it was this teal fabric from the Basic Mixology line from Moda.) This fabric must be used somewhere in the project.

When we registered at the end of August, we decided if we wanted to make a mini quilt  - 18" square maximum, or a mug rug - 10" square maximum. Beth received all of the registrations and paired up partners according to what they wanted to make and their fabric or quilt style preferences. We then had until October 2nd to make and send our quilts to our partners.  

This is what I made for my partner, Athena.


Athena really likes Tula Pink fabrics and she said that she's been a bit enamored with the color emerald lately. She also likes modern quilting, so I used an emerald background fabric and one complete charm pack to create her mini quilt.

There were duplicates in the charm pack, but that worked out well. After I decided which fabrics would be used in the quilt body, I chose two for the hanging pockets on the back and then pieced the rest of them for a scrappy binding.   

I usually diagonally piece my binding segments, but since these were only 5", I stitched them end to end, as you can see in the picture below. I like how this turned out! This was a bit challenging because I was working with 5" pieces, but I'm please that I decided to do this instead of pick a single fabric and just bind it with that. Challenge issued - challenge accepted - challenge completed!

Here's a picture that Athena took of everything I sent her. The emerald fabric shows up better in her picture than it does in mine. I included a few extras with her mini. I sent along a pack of 20 Tula Pink charm squares, a magnetic needle holder and pin (she does a lot of hand work), and a copy of the Quilt Sampler magazine that featured M & E Quilt Shoppe and the quilt I designed for them. I used a scrap of the Tula Pink fabric from the mini to make a card for her as well.

I had some yardage of the teal fabric in my stash so I decided to make a second mini quilt, in case someone's life got crazy and they weren't able to make one. I've told Beth that she is welcome to use this, if needed. This is very simple and to the point.

Here's the pieced backing. I used the teal fabric in the front, on the back, and in the bias binding. It kind of wraps around the quilt, like a barber poll.  :-)

If it ends up that Beth does not need this to be sent to someone, I think I'll just send it to her as a way to say, "Thanks for all you do!"

Here's the wonderful mini quilt AND mug rug that I received from Athena. She included a couple of extras as well - a coffee mug (with a lid!) and a journal that I have already been using.

I love the fabrics she used and the fun setting. When I signed up, I said that I really had no preference on the fabric choices or style of quilting. I really do like just about anything, and I wanted it to be easy for my partner. After some messaging back and forth, Athena asked if I liked modern and of course I said yes. She decided to go with that and I love what she did! The mug rug and coffee mug are in my sewing room and the mini is in the computer room.

So, back to the reason for this Tip Tuesday! post. Challenge yourself with a swap. Be honest with yourself and your partner about your skill level, and then do the best work you can. Don't stress over this, but take it seriously. When you are making something for someone else, you tend to be a little more careful about matching seams and pressing accurately.

Maybe start small and with a group of friends. Or, jump in head first and swap with complete strangers. Whatever you do, have fun! 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Design Wall Monday

I've finally finished all of the blocks for Jack's grey and yellow quilt. He decided that he wanted two vertical rows of yellow blocks, so that's what he's getting. I still think I would have liked just one row of yellow (second row from the left), but since it's his quilt I let him decide. Perhaps I'll have to make one for me and just have the one row. :-)

I still have a bunch of work to do before I start subbing long-term, so I don't know when I'll get this sewn together, but hopefully it won't take long.

I've been working on this and one other project as a leader/ender project, so I actually have two quilts that are ready to have bocks sewn into rows. I'll get this quilt off the wall and organize the rows so they are ready to sew and then I'll put the other blocks up and take a picture.

The second project is a simple quilt made using 48 - 5 rail fence blocks, and I've used just three fabrics throughout the entire quilt. It's a Quit of Valor project and I'm excited to say that all of the fabric has come from stash. YIPPEE!

Check out what other quilters have on their design walls.

Go to Judy L's Patchwork Times


Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Handmade Halloween - Fall Quilts

Here's another addition to the
Handmade Halloween
Linky Party

If you have not done so already, you should jump over to
to see some awesome Halloween-inspired creations.
I am often amazed at the talent and creativity I see as I cruise blogs, and this linky party definitely does not disappoint.

Today, I've decided to show a few more of my Fall and/or Halloween- inspired quilts.

I already showed you my favorite pumpkin wall hanging and placemats, my Maple Leaf Log Cabin, the small fussy cut pumpkin quilt, but I have a couple other quilts that I've made that were inspired by this time of year. I no longer own some of these quilts, but I do know that they are all being used and loved by someone that I love.
If I still owned these quilts, I would have tried to get better pictures. Wow! I really do need help in the photography department. :-)

I love the colors of Autumn and find myself drawn to them frequently. Even if I had no intention of making a Halloween quilt, sometimes it just happens.

This is Sadie's quilt. From the front, it looks innocent enough, although it is a spider web pattern. I usually see the secondary star pattern before I see the spider web, so it really could pass as a non-Halloween quilt.

But, check out the back!
I used glow in the dark thread from Superior Threads when I quilted this and I LOVE how it looks.

I used glow in the dark thread on top too, but I was not able to get a good picture of it. (My step-daughter Linda took this picture and she did an awesome job. It makes me smile whenever I see it!)

This quilt is one of my all-time favorites because I love the fabrics. It's simple (small rail fence blocks on point made from a large variety of cheddar fabrics with alternating small squares of shirting fabric), but I LOVE it!  

I gave this to a very good friend who needed to know that she is loved. Knowing that she still uses it makes me smile.

I think I may have to dive into my stash and see if I could make one for ME.  :-)  

Here is a Fall quilt that I still own. It was my first Judy Niemeyer quilt, Glacier Star, done in Fall-inspired fabrics.

Thank you Sue Wilson for starting me on my path to Judy Niemeyer quilts. Not only have I made some awesome quilts, I've made some awesome friends too. (Yes Denise. That includes you! Thanks for letting me stay at your house every time I go to TN.) 

And finally, another quilt that has absolutely no Halloween fabrics in it, but it is THE Halloween quilt according to my grandchildren.

Unfortunately, this picture does not do this quilt justice so I just took the quilt outside and threw it on a chair to get a couple of quick pictures.

See! There are no Halloween fabrics in this quilt but it just screams Halloween to the grand kids. :-)

That's enough for today.

Give yourself a treat and head over to

for some Halloween Eye Candy!