July 23, 2014

Quilt Show this weekend!

If you are anywhere near southeastern Michigan this weekend, you must come to the Greater Ann Arbor Quilt Guild Quilt Show!  I'm a longtime member of this guild and the show is always fantastic!  There are over 200 amazing quilts of all kinds, lots of wonderful vendors and some special exhibits.

In a fun convergence of my quilt guild lives, the Ann Arbor Modern Quilt Guild has a special exhibit at the show.  Modern Quilts will feature nearly two dozen examples of modern quilts made by members of the Ann Arbor Modern Quilt Guild.

If you are a fan of my work, I'll have 5 quilts in the two shows (2 in the GAAQG show and 3 in the AAMQG show) and I'll be there in a booth selling my patterns with more of my quilts.  It might be Esch House Quilts overload, but it should be fun!

The show is this Saturday and Sunday, July 26 and 27 in the Morris Lawrence Building at Washtenaw Community College.  Admission is $6 and show hours are 9-5 on Saturday and 11-5 on Sunday.  Stop by and say hi!

July 22, 2014

Coming Thursday!

My quilt is featured in the new book Fun-Size Quilts! Martingale is hosting a big celebration for the release of the book this Thursday, including 16 giveaways of the eBook. Visit my blog on Thursday and join in the fun! 

July 16, 2014

Modern Patchwork winner!

Robin is the winner of Modern Patchwork Summer!  Congratulations Robin!  Thanks to everyone for playing along.  For those of you who didn't win, you can get the magazine here.

July 15, 2014

Amazing sale!

Click over as fast as you can for this sale!

July 13, 2014

Sew Solid Sunday #7!

Smooth Sailing
Welcome back to another Sew Solid Sunday!  I had so much fun making this month's project!  Going into last week, I had another project in mind for today, but it wasn't working out like I'd hoped. So I was trying to decide whether to go ahead with it or not.  (You know how sometimes you hate a project when you are in the middle of it and then when you finish it, you love it again?)

Friday morning I was looking for my graph paper for another project (not Sew Solid Sunday) and I stumbled across this sketch I did several months ago.  It yelled at me - "I am perfect for a summer Sew Solid Sunday!"  So I listened :)

I mean how can you go wrong with the classic cool of blue and white in the summer time?  In another bit of serendipity, I also happened to have some scraps left from a Kona True Blue color story bundle.  I used seven darks from that bundle and added a bit of Navy from my stash.  And I always have plenty of Kona White on hand.  Bonus - a total scrap/stash project!

Here is what I did for this 16" Smooth Sailing pillow:
Cut one 3" square from 8 different dark blues

From the white (you will need 11 usable inches x WOF), cut:
1 3" strip, 2 2½" strips and 2 1½" strips (all WOF)
subcut these to:
8  3" white squares
12  2½" white squares
3  2½" x 14½" strips
2  1½" x 14½" strips
2  1½" x 16½" strips

Match a 3" blue square with a 3" white square and make a half square triangle (HST) block.  Repeat with the remaining 3" squares to finish with 16 HST blocks.  Trim to 2½" square.

Lay out a row with four HST blocks, placing three white 2½" squares in between them.  Sew together for one row.  Repeat to make four rows.

Sew the 2½" x 14½" white strips between the rows.  Then sew the 1½" x 14½" strips to the sides of the pillow and the 1½" x 16½" strips to the top and bottom.

Layer your pillow top with a backing and batting and quilt as desired.  

I quilted my pillow with straight lines and made a zippered back.  You can find my tutorial on how to make a back with a covered zipper here.

I thought about binding the pillow in dark blue, but decided to let the blue "sailboats" keep all the attention instead of sharing it with the binding, so I just sewed the front and back right sides together and turned the pillow right side out.

    An InLinkz Link-up

July 9, 2014

Modern Patchwork Summer!

Modern Patchwork Summer
Modern Patchwork Summer is available for pre-order now!  This is the first ever Summer issue of Modern Patchwork and you know it is loaded with beautiful projects and I have a copy available for one of you lucky readers!

The project I designed is called Waves and it just feels like summer to me!  Isn't this shot from the magazine lovely!  It just looks so peaceful!  I love those great colors too - the fabric is from the Sphere line by Zen Chic for Moda that came out in February.  (A side note:  I love everything that Brigitte from Zen Chic designs!  She has done 4 fabric collections so far, with a 5th due out in August, and I have made quilts from 3 of the 4 collections - I missed Barcelona somehow :( ).

Waves finishes at 62" x 62".  You can see in the flatter shot here that the "waves" are made up of squares in graduating sizes.  I kept the colors somewhat grouped together to represent the water, horizon and sunny sky.  I quilted it in wavy lines to continue the theme.  I think this quilt is just dying to be taken on a picnic or to the beach!

Now for the giveaway:  leave me a comment and tell me what you're sewing this summer.

Please, if you are a no-reply blogger, leave your email address in your comment.  If I can't reach you, you can't win!

The giveaway will close at the end of the day on Saturday, July 12.  Good luck!

July 5, 2014

Luggage Tag Tutorial

I bought some new luggage earlier this year and my recent trip to Raleigh was the first time I'd taken my new suitcase on a plane.  My old suitcase had a little slot on the back of it that I could slide my business card into.  I didn't realize until I got to the airport that there was no slot on this suitcase and I didn't have any luggage tags!

What is any self-respecting sewist to do, but make some?  Here is how I made mine:


  • 2  3" x 4 1/2" pieces of fabric for the tag
  • 1  1" x 9" piece of fabric for the strap
  • 1  2 1/2" x 3 3/4" piece of vinyl for the cover  (I cut up a nametag holder I had on hand)
  • 1  2 1/2" x 3 3/4" piece of Pellon Peltex 72F double-sided fusible ultra firm interfacing  (I had some from a previous project, but any firm fusible would probably work)

Sew the two tag fabrics right sides together using a very scant 1/4" seam on both long and one short side.
Turn right side out and press.  Tuck in the raw edges 1/4" and press again.
Tuck the Peltex inside the tag "envelope".

Fold the 9" strap piece with the raw edges to the center and then in half again to make the strap.  Stitch along the edge.  (I used my 1/2" bias tape maker to do the first fold and then pressed it in half again and stitched.)

Tuck the strap in between the tag and the Peltex and fuse the Peltex in place on both sides of the tag.

Align the edges of the vinyl with the edges of the tag that do not include the strap.  (I used binding clips to hold it in place).  Stitch around all four sides of the tag being sure NOT to catch the vinyl on the end where the strap attaches.

Slide your card in between the tag and the vinyl and attach it to your suitcase!

I didn't think about privacy until after I'd made these tags, but if I make any more, I might try to find a frosted plastic in place of the clear vinyl so my card is not as easy to read by those who don't need the information.

What a fun, fast project!  In addition to identifying my bag in case it gets lost, with these new tags I won't have any trouble spotting my black suitcase among the many others black ones.  That yellow Collage fabric just makes me smile!