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Archive for the ‘Fun Stuff’ Category

Wishing you a wonderful Christmas full of joy, peace, love and happiness.

If you celebrate any other Winter Holidays, I still wish you joy, peace, love and happiness.

Take a break from your quilting and enjoy the day, enjoy your family, enjoy your friends and be thankful for the life you have.

Merry Christmas everyone! 

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I am hoping that as we approach the Christmas holiday, that you are calm, relaxed, and everything is under control.

If you are anything like me, that is all a dream and I am in almost panic mode because there is still way too MANY things to do!!

Do you have some orphan quilt blocks or other quilted fabric laying around? If so, you are half way done with making the gifts I have listed below

Click on any photo for a larger view


Practically Painless Pillows – Who doesn’t love pillows? And, if you have some orphan quilt blocks, half of your work is done! You don’t even have to quilt the blocks! I have figured out how to make perfect pillows, every time, including an easy way to put a zipper in the back of the pillow!

For Pillows Class details Click Here

 


Table Runners are always a great gift! Above is one I made a few years ago for my sister. She LOVES it!! I quilted this one with free hand feathers, but you can quilt ANY design you want!

For instructions on how to make this table runner Click Here

For instructions on how to make the same table runner, but quilted with Feathered Hearts Click Here


Cup Cozies are another great gift idea. If you have some already quilted fabric – maybe from some practice pieces – you can make these Cup Cozies in a snap!!

Also included is a recipe for home made Peppermint Mocha!

For details Click Here

 

 


One last quick gift!

Mug Rugs are great gifts for the coffee or tea drinker! You can make a TON of these really quickly.

I used free hand feathered hearts, but you can do any kind of quilt design. Or, if you have quilted fabric – maybe left over from the cup cozies above – you can make these!

For an even quicker finish, use a pinking shear and cut around the edges of the mug rug instead of binding them!

For step by step instructions on how to make the Mug Rugs Click Here


I hope these last minute gift ideas will help you in your last minute holiday preparations!

PS – I still have to put the binding on a couple of quilts!

MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR to you and your family!

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Along with being an “obsessed” quilter, I am also an avid knitter! I always take my knitting with me, which is what I did when I visited with my family in the Midwest (Northern Illinois) over the Thanksgiving holiday.

While I was there, I knitted 2 Santa Hats and a Candy Cane Scarf along with a Seahawks color cowl. I had a LOT of knitting time, which was wonderful!!!

I posted photos of the Santa Hat and the Candy Cane scarf to a knitting Facebook group (Addicted to Knitting – I highly recommend joining this group if you are a knitter) and people were requesting the pattern for them.

When I made the hat and scarf, I “winged it” and made up the pattern as I went along. I have written up the instructions and they are below. I also have a PDF of the instructions which you can download by Clicking Here

I hope you enjoy these instructions and if you make a Santa Hat or two or the Candy Cane Scarf, send photos and I will post them here.

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Knitted Santa Hat and Candy Cane Scarf

For PDF instructions Santa Hat and Scarf

Click on any photo for a larger view. For more photos go to the end of this post

The following directions are somewhat generic and almost a recipe for creating these items. These instructions have not been tested or tech edited. If you see any mistakes or problem, please let me know. My email is at the end of the instructions.

Note – the shape of the scarf in the photo is a little (???) wonky. I was working with several different increases / decreases until I got the shape I wanted. I am working on a new sample and will add a new photo when it is finished.

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The red and the white yarn is— I Love This Yarn, from Hobby Lobby. It is acrylic and a worsted weight.

The fuzzy yarn (at the top of the ribbing on the hat and is the white yarn in the center of the red section of the scarf) is also from Hobby Lobby and it is called Yarn Bee, Snuggle Up. This yarn is optional.

Here is a link to the Snuggle Up yarn

https://www.hobbylobby.com/Yarn-Needle-Art/Yarn/White-Yarn-Bee-Snuggle-Up-Yarn/p/80843875

Size 8 needles. If you want the hat ribbing to be a bit tighter, use size 7 or 6 needles. The hat is knit in the round, you will need circular needles and / or double pointed needles for the crown. The scarf is knit flat on size 8 needles.

Stitch markers, purchased pom pom or yarn pom pom.

Santa Hat

I don’t know the exact gauge or size – I gifted the hat before I decided to write up the instructions. The hat I knit fit an adults head. My gauge was about 5 stitches per inch in stockinette stitch. Again, I don’t know for sure.

If you want a hat calculator which has a lot of different sizes and yarn gauges, I would recommend visiting –

http://www.earthguild.com/products/knitcroc/marypat/hatcalc.htm

Here are the instructions I used –

With the white yarn using circular needles, cast on 80 stitches, join stitches and work in K2, P2 ribbing for 2 – 3 inches.
Note: I used size 7 needles for the ribbing.

If you are using the Snuggle Up yarn, knit 4 rounds. If you are not using the Snuggle Up yarn change to the red yarn.

Change to the red yarn and work in stocking stitch (knit each row) for about 3 inches.

Begin decreases. Knit 20 stitches, place a marker. Repeat 3 more times. Use a different marker to note the beginning of the round.

Next round – K2 together, knit to marker. Repeat 3 more times. Four stitches decreased.

Knit 5 rounds.

Continue to decrease 4 stitches every sixth round until there are 8 stitches left.

Leave a yarn tail and cut yarn. Thread yarn onto a tapestry needle and put stitches onto the yarn tail and pull tight and secure.

Attach a purchased pom pom (which is what I did. I got my pom pom at Hobby Lobby) or make a pom pom with white yarn and attach.

Weave in all end and wear proudly!

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Candy Cane Scarf

Size 8 needles, white and red worsted weight yarn. Optional white Snuggle Up yarn. The scarf is knit flat in Garter Stitch (knit each row)

Gauge is not important. Scarf length is about 50 – 60 inches or desired length.

Stitches

K – knit
S1P – slip 1 stitch as if to purl. Doing this at the start of each row makes a neat and flexible edge.
SKPO – slip 1 stitch, knit the next stitch, pass the slipped stitch over the knitted stitch. One stitch deceased.
YO – yarn over
TBL – knit through the back loop of the stitch. This is done over the yarn over stitch in the previous row to “close” it up. I feel that this makes a more “flexible” increase.

There are three sections to this scarf – the increase section, the work even section and the decrease section.

Stitching sequence for the Candy Cane Stripes are on the next page.

With white yarn, Cast on 5 stitches –

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Set up rows

Set up Row 1 – S1P, K1, YO, K to end.
Set up Row 2 – S1P, SKPO, K to end.
Begin Increase Section

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Increase Section instructions

Row 1 – S1P, K1, YO, K to end.
Row 2 – S1P, SKPO, YO, K to end. (1 stitch increased)
Row 3 – S1P, K1, YO, K to last 3 stiches, TBL (of the YO in the previous row) K2.
Row 4 – S1P, SKPO, K to end.

Notes: You will be increasing 1 stitch every 4 rows. I recommend putting a marker to indicate the right side of your work and to indicate the YO edge.

Repeat the 4 rows above until you have 45 stitches on your needle.

If desired, measure your scarf along the YO edge. It should be about 28 (+/-) inches long.

Note: This measurement will be about the same for the Decrease Section.

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Work Even Section

Row 1 – S1P, K1, YO, K to end.
Row 2 – S1P, SKPO, K to end.

Repeat these two rows until your scarf measures about 30 – 32 inches (+/-) or desired length, from cast on edge. Begin working the Decrease Section

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Decrease Section

Row 1 – S1P, K1, YO, K to end.
Row 2 – S1P, SKPO, SKPO, K to end. (1 stitch decreased)
Row 3 – S1P, K1, YO, K to last 3 stiches, TBL (of the YO in the previous row) K2.
Row 4 – S1P, SKPO, K to end.

Notes: You will be decreasing 1 stitch every 4 rows.

Repeat the 4 rows above until you have 5 stitches on your needle.

K 2 rows then bind off and weave in ends. Block lightly if needed.

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Color strips for the Candy Cane Stripes

Note: I began this sequence after the set up rows.

Work 28 rows (14 ridges) in white yarn
Work 6 rows (3 ridges) in red yarn
Work 2 rows (1 ridge) in white yarn or the Snuggle Up yarn
Work 6 rows (3 ridges) in red yarn

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I hope you enjoy these patterns.

If you have any questions about them or need more information, please contact me
at longarmu@aol.com

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As promised, here are some photos – Click on any photo for a larger view

I gifted the hat and scarf to my Daughter-in-Law, Reesia Roth and here she is modeling them.

And she wore them when she put the kids on the school bus this morning.

While I was in Northern Illinois, I made two Santa Hats. Before I left, I got photos of both my Mom and Dad wearing the hats! They look so festive!

Here is my Mom, 88 years young!

And here is my Dad, 92 years young!

And here they are together! In October they celebrated their 69th Anniversary!!!

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Happy Independence Day!

What better way to celebrate all things American than with a barn quilt and a barn quilt!!!

On a recent visit to Northern Illinois to visit my family, my sister, brother-in-law and I went “barn quilting” in Racine County, WI. (For more information about the Racine County Barn Quilts Click Here)

I saw this barn quilt and I LOVED it!!! I don’t think I have ever seen a pattern like that before. Of course I had to take a photo – (click on any photo for a larger view.)

And since I was visiting and staying with my Mom & Dad for nearly three weeks, and I had access to a sewing machine and sewing tools (thanks to my sister Sherree) guess what I did?

I made my own Stars & Flags Barn Quilt quilt!

I did take some liberties and added the extra stars across the top of the quilt for added length. I am planning on donating this quit to American Hero Quilts, and organization that makes and donates quilts to active duty wounded soldiers.  (For more information about American Hero Quilts Click Here

This quilt is has been quilted but I am not yet posting a photo of the finished quilt. I am working on turning this quilt into a Summer Mystery Quilt Event. I hope to be posting the details in a few days.

Take some time today to celebrate your independence and your freedoms with your family and friends!

Enjoy the day, I know that I am. And I am free to do what I love, which is quilts and quilting!!!

 

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It HAS been a while since I have posted quilt photos!!! Even though I haven’t posted many photos, I really HAVE been busy. As always, I am working on several project at one time (I must be the Queen of multi-tasking), and sometimes when multi-tasking it takes more time to get things done! If anyone know of how to get an extra hour or two out of a day, please let me know.

I recently finished this way too cute Snowman Quilt. It is 38 x 51 inches and it was very nicely pieced. There were a lot of small-ish pieces and the stars were done with the folded triangle technique.

Click on any photo for a larger view.

The batting is Warm & Natural and I used several high sheen polyester (HSP) threads. The background fabric is a tree print, and I think the trees are birch trees (I am not a tree expert. Let me know if they are different). The main color of the trees are gray, so I used a silver HSP thread and just “followed” the direction of the trees with wavy lines of quilting. You may be able to see the quilting lines if you expand the photo below.

In the snowmen I quilted spirals. The backing photo below shows more of the quilting.

I love when the quilting on the front of the quilt almost “disappears” but REALLY shows up on the back! Which is exactly what happened with this next quilt.

This quilt, Color Splash quilt, is huge at 101 x 101 inches!!! It is so big, that I could get only half of the quilt over my clothesline to get photos! The photo below is only about one fourth of the quilt! I’m not sure if you can see the quilting from the front of the quilt. I used silver HSP thread and quilted free hand feathers and swirls as an all over design in the body of the quilt.

In the outer border I quilted my “straight edge” feathers and the inner border has my “more bang for the buck” feather! You can see the quilting a bit better in the dark border. (For an online class on how to quilt these feathers Click Here)The batting is Warm & Natural.

But the back looks spectacular! The backing fabric is a dark,  black on black print, but in the photo it is showing up as gray. Trust me, it is DARK black fabric! And since I use the same thread on the top and the bobbin, the silver HSP thread really sparkles on the back of the quilt.

On the left edge and lower left corner, you can see the border feathers. ALL the feathers are done free hand – and I LOVE quilting free hand feathers!!!

I am planning on posting more quilt photos in the not too distant future.

 

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Happy Halloween!!!

 

 

Women are Angels
And when someone breaks our wings….
we simply continue to fly……….
on a broomstick…
We are flexible….

Unknown

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A few days ago I posted photos of my Patriotic Star quilt block and I have had several requests for the instructions on how to make this block. I have written out the instructions for both the Patriotic Star quilt block and the instructions on how to make the table runner.

You can view and save these instructions as a pdf file by clicking on the highlighted text Patriotic-Stars-Pattern

I have also put together a photo tutorial on how to construct this block. Note: These instructions are photo intensive and I have the photos at a small size so more can fit on the screen. Click on any photo for a larger view.

Fabrics

1 Fat Quarter or equivalent of the fabrics listed below will make 1 Patriotic Star block, plus a few more!

Blue Star fabric, Red Star fabric, Red and White striped fabric, OR solid red and solid white fabric to make your own striped fabric.
Background fabric – 1 Fat Quarter or equivalent

Refer to the PDF file (see above) for the cutting dimensions.

The piecing instructions for the Star Points are written (and illustrated below) so that you don’t have to use any special piecing rulers.

NOTE: For a great red / white wavy striped fabric, I recommend visiting the Quilted Dragon  website.  (www.quilteddragon.com) She is a quilting friend and has great fabric Click on the link to go directly to the fabric  Red & White Striped Fabric 

Tools

If you would prefer use special piecing rulers to make the elongated triangles that are used in the Patriotic Star Block, I recommend the following:

Peaky & Spike Templates by Marti Michelle
http://www.FromMarti.com

Tri-Recs Tool from EZ Quilting

These template sets should be available at your local quilt shop.


Star Center – Pieced Strips

Take the 1 inch x 2-1/2 inch pieces of the Solid Red and Solid White fabrics and stitch them together along the long edges. Press to one side.

 

 

 


Take the 1 inch x 4-1/2 inch pieces of the Solid Red and Solid White fabrics and stitch them together along the long edges. Press to one side.

 

 


Take the 2-1/2 x 2-1/2 inch piece of the Blue Star fabric and the two (sewn) striped pieces and place them EXACTLY as shown.

Stitch these pieces together like a 4-Patch and press as desired.

 

 


The completed Star Center block is shown. This piece should measure 4-1/2 x 4-1/2 inches square, including seam allowances.

Make 1 Star Center for each block you are making.

 

 

 


Star Center – Striped Fabric

If you are using Red and White striped fabric, place the pieces a shown in the photo at the far left. Stitch together like a 4-Patch to form the Star Center. Press as desired.  This piece should measure 4-1/2 x 4-1/2 inches square, including seam allowances.

Make 1 Star Center for each block you are making.

 


Star Points – Using Templates/Rulers

If you are using piecing templates/rulers, follow the directions to make the following 4-1/2 inch square Star Point blocks.

For EACH Patriotic Star Block you will need the following –

1 – Star Point with Blue fabric on the left and Red fabric on the right. (See upper left)

1 – Star Point with Red fabric on the left and Blue fabric on the right. (See upper right)

2 – Star Points with Red fabric on the left and Red fabric on the right. (See bottom left and right)

If you are NOT using piecing templates/rulers, go to the next section.

 


Star Points – without rulers

On a padded surface, WRONG sides up, pin OPPOSITE corners of 2 – 4-1/2 x 2-1/2 inch Star Point fabric EXACTLY as shown in the photo.

Note: – I like to use a padded and gridded ironing pad or a folded terry towel on top of my ironing board. Yes, I know that my ironing mat is a little (??) grubby. I use it quite a lot with my piecing!

Start with the Red Star fabric to make the Star Points.

 


Take the “flaps” that were to the inside, and fold them out as shown at the right. Make sure that the fold that is being created is along a long straight line. The RIGHT side of the fabric is on the top.

Press to make a crease line along the fold line. You now have right and left leaning long triangle pieces.

Your Star Points should look EXACTLY like the photos at the left.

 


Remove the pins and re-position the (new) long triangles as shown at the right.

DO NOT TRIM YET!!

 

 


Take a light 4-1/2 inch fabric square and position ONE Star Point as show at the right. Make sure that the lower (straight) corner of the triangle matches the same corner of the background square.

 

 

 


Carefully open the Star Point and place a pin or two on the “under flap” of fabric.

Instead of pins, use fabric glue stick or similar product to hold in place

Stitch just inside of the fold line.

 


Fold the Star Point back into position and make sure it is lined up properly. When satisfied with the placement of the triangle, trim the excess under flap and background fabric to 1/4 inch from the seam.

If desired, press the diagonal seam OPEN!

The “open” seam make quilting MUCH easier!

 


Place the remaining Star Point on the 4-1/2 inch background square exactly as shown in the photo. Make sure that the lower (straight) corner of the triangle matches the same corner of the background square.

 

 

 


Carefully open the Star Point and place a pin or two on the “under flap” of fabric.

Instead of pins, use fabric glue stick or similar product to hold in place

Stitch just inside of the fold line.

 

 


Fold the Star Point back into position and make sure it is lined up properly. When satisfied with the placement of the triangle, trim the excess under flap and background fabric to 1/4 inch from the seam.

If desired, press the diagonal seam OPEN!

 

 


The Red Star fabric Star Point Unit is now completed! When finished, the Star Point Unit should measure 4-1/2 inches square, which includes seam allowances.

Make a total of 2 Red Star fabric Star Point Units for each block.

 

 


Then make –

1 – Star Point with Blue fabric on the left and Red fabric on the right.

1 – Star Point with Red fabric on the left and Blue fabric on the right.

 

 


Putting the Patriotic Star Block Together

Place the Star Center, the 4-1/2 inch square Background Corner pieces and the Star Points EXACTLY as shown in the photo to form the Patriotic Star Block.

Stitch the block together and press as desired.

 

 


The completed Patriotic Star Block should measure 12-1/2 inches square, including seam allowances.

Here are two blocks, the one at the left has the pieced stripes in the Star Center and the block on the right has the striped (printed) fabric in the Star Center.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


I hope you enjoy making the Patriotic Star Quilt Block and use it in your projects.

Here is the link to the PDF file for the Patriotic Star Table Runner Patriotic-Stars-Pattern  which includes the instructions on how to piece the Star Points without templates or special rulers.

Please feel free to leave a comment.

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