Monthly Archives: February 2019

A Quick Trip Down Memory Lane

Dust off a quilt book blog hopSeveral years ago, an online quilters group I belong to got into a discussion about other activities we enjoy. Cooking, travel, writing and photography were mentioned quite often, but it turned out nearly all of us had two things in common – we have pets (mostly cats and/or dogs), and we are avid readers.  Most of us also had a sizable library of quilting books.

My own collection began with one of the few quilting books available when I made my first quilt in 1973, Ruby McKim’s 101 Patchwork Quilt Patterns. Rotary cutters hadn’t been invented yet, so every one of the 1755 (but who’s counting) 2.5″ squares in my 9-Patch quilt was traced with a pencil around a cardboard template and cut with scissors. Of course, the template’s edges got a bit “softer” with each tracing, so perfectly matching seams were a dream, not a realistic goal. It wouldn’t have won any prizes, but it kept me warm, and that was the point, and I was hooked.

Pellman - World of Amish Quilts

Soon after I began quilting, I discovered Amish quilts, and bought a couple of books about the quilts made in Pennsylvania. I’ve always loved bold graphic designs, and my father’s family is Mennonite, so it was probably a natural attraction.

One thing that struck me was that – contrary to the “rule” that Amish quilts must be mostly black or  dark and “cool” colors – most of the quilts in this book have very little black. And bright? There were some of the most over-the-top color combinations I had ever seen. I loved it! Colors that weren’t acceptable for clothing could be used in quilts.

Magnificent MinisHere, my “Dust off a Quilt Book” blog hop post segues into my “Magnificent Mini” challenge blog post for Island Batik fabric, Aurifil threads and Hobbs batting. They supplied the materials for this project.

I chose to make a miniature version of the Amish classic “Trip Around the World.”

IMG_2889I had quite a bit of fabric left over from my 2018 “stash” of Island Batik Fabrics, including this stack of 10″ squares from the Lavendula collection. I chose a navy blue from the “foundations” collection to go with it. I decided my center would be 9″ x 9″ (finished size), and the individual squares would be 1″ finished. My borders would finish 3″ wide.


I needed five colors for the center of my quilt, so I chose five of the more “solid” color squares, and cut four 1.5″ x 10″ strips from each square.



Next, I had to make five strip sets, each with four strips, and rotating the colors properly. To help keep things in order, I cut a square from each of the scraps and numbered them. I laid out the squares in order for each stripset.


Then I cut four 1.5″ segments from each stripset.


I decided I wanted my largest diamond to be the lavender, so I set two of those strips aside, and began building two halves, working from the center strip out, adding matching strip to each side as I went.


This rotation meant the center square would be white, so I cut a 1.5″ x 1.5″ square, and sewed it to the turquoise ends of the two remaining strip. This became the middle row of my centerpiece.

Now for the borders:


I chose two matching purple and blue mottled squares for the border, and cut two 3.5″ x 9.5″ strips from each square. If I recall, I had a half yard of the navy blue. I cut two 2.25″ x 44″ strips for the binding, four 3.5″ squares for the corners and pieced a 16″ x 16″ square from the remainder for the backing.


With the borders in place, it was time to layer this mini up with a bit of Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 batting and figure out how to quilt it.


My collection of Aurifil threads is still pretty limited…but growing. These were my best choices for this project. I decided the white would be too stark, while the icy blue would show up, but not overpower the fabric.


First, I decided to emphasize the squares in the center by quilting concentric squares. I used the inside edge of the toe of my 1/4″ foot to space my quilting lines about 1/8″ from my seam lines.


I came up with this simple little Celtic style detail to dress up the corners just a bit.

Add a binding, and a title “Across the Pond”, and this little quilt celebrates the journey of two of my Quaker ancestors, Thomas Stackhouse and Grace Heaton, who arrived in Philadelphia aboard  The Lamb. In 2001, I got to spend a day in the towns of Settle and Giggleswick, Yorkshire, UK. It felt like a homecoming of sorts, to walk on  streets that they may have known centuries ago.

Across the Pond - Title

Thanks to Bea for thinking up and hosting the “Dust Off a Quilt Book” Blog Hop! I can’t wait to see what the other bloggers have found on their bookshelves. Many of them, like Bea and I, are also Island Batik Ambassadors!

Monday Feb 18th
Pamela at Pamelaquilts
Selina at Selinaquilts
Kathleen at Kathleenmcmusing
Tuesday Feb 19th
Jennifer at curlicuecreations
Kathy at Kathysquilts
Wednesday Feb 20th
Suzy at Websterquilt
Brenda at songbirddesigns
Denise at craftraditions
Thursday Feb 21st
Leanne at Devoted Quilter
Jennifer at Dizzyquilter
Lee Anne at Podunk Pretties
Lyndsey at Sew Many Yarns
Friday Feb 22nd
Bea at Beaquilter
Barbara at Bejweledquilts
Marian at seams to be sew


Categories: 10" Squares, Aurifil Threads, Hobbs Batting, Island Batik Ambassador, Island Batik Fabric, Miniatures, Uncategorized | 32 Comments

Here We Go Again!

2019 IB Round-Ambassador-GraphicMy first year as an Ambassador for Island Batik fabrics wrapped last Friday with the posting of my “Many Glacier” quilt, made for the “Icicle” collection, which should be in your local quilt shop about now. When I signed up for the program, I had no idea what to expect, but wave the promise of two shipments of Island Batik fabrics, and a selection of Hobbs battings, and spools and spools of Aurifil threads at me, and I’m IN! What’s more, I’m staying in for 2019. Color me HAPPY.

There are more than 4 dozen Ambassadors this year, and our 2019 “tour of duty” began a couple of weeks ago, when we each received TWO big boxes via FedEx.

The first box, I had expected. It was 24lbs of wonderful fabrics and supplies from Island Batik, Hobbs and Aurifil:


A variety of Aurifil threads


These packages contain a brand new collection of Island Batik Fabrics that will be introduced that will be introduced to shop owners at Quilt Market this spring.


This is a beautiful Rayon batik scarf!


Island Batik’s popular Batik Sold – 3 yards each of white, gray and black.


5 yards of a lovely pastel pink neutral. This is from Island Batik’s Basic collection.


This will be my biggest challenge. It’s 2 yards of a tiger stripe rayon batik. Ideas welcome!


A Stack (42 10″ squares) of Twilight Chic, plus two coordinates. Watch for this collection in my March project.


Hobbs Thermore batting. It’s a super-thin bonded and fusible batting made for use in quilted clothing. It works nicely in table runners and placemats, too.


I’m a scrap quilter, so I L-O-V-E these. Island Batik calls them Stash Builders. each package has twenty 5″ x 22″ strips.


More Hobbs batting. This one is Tuscany – a silk blend. 60″ x 60″.


Hobbs Heirloom Premium Cotton Batting – Crib Size


Hobbs Heirloom 80/20 Black Batting – Queen Size


Hobbs Heirloom Natural Cotton Batting – Queen Size


8 cuts from Island Batik’s “Blenders” collection. We can use these in any project.

Between you and me, this would have made me perfectly happy for the better part of the year. But wait…I said there were TWO boxes. I can’t tell you how excited the 2019 Ambassadors were to learn that we have a new sponsor – AccuQuilt.

Yes, they did


AccuQuilt sent each of us a Ready. Set. GO! die cutting system! (Photo: AccuQuilt)


The 8″ Qube die set includes eight dies that cut shapes you can mix and match to make dozens of 8″ blocks. There are also Qube sets available for 6″, 9″, 10″ and 12″ blocks. (Photo: AccuQuilt)

I’ll admit, a did a little schoolgirl hopping and squealing. I’ve been a fan of AccuQuilt from the beginning. In fact, I used the first royalty check from my book, The Thrifty Quilter: Make (Nearly) Free Quilts from Leftover Fabric (2010 to buy my first AccuQuilt GO!.

50568I didn’t even know about AccuQuilt when I wrote the book, which describes my simple system for cutting up the scraps (anything smaller than a quarter-yard) from my quilting projects into custom pre-cuts, and 80 blocks that can be made in two sizes each from those pre-cuts.

As it happened, my publisher heard about AccuQuilt as we were going to press, so she contacted the company, and it turned out they have dies that match the six shapes in my system. So, they added a “GO! Compatible” label to the cover, and have offered it on their website ever since.

We have one AccuQuilt-themed challenge on our schedule for this year, but I can promise you’ll see a lot more GO!-compatible projects.

Dust off a quilt book blog hopMy fellow Ambassadors are opening their boxes now, too. Visit their blogs to see the goodies they got. We’ll be posting our first projects for 2019 soon, too. Our theme is “Magnificent Mini Quilts”. Mine will be up on February 18, the first day of the Dust Off an Old Book Blog Hop, being organized by one of the Island Batik Ambassadors. Mine is one of the first quilt books I ever bought. I think you’ll enjoy it.


2019 Island Batik Ambassadors

Carolina Asmussen ~Carolina Asmussen

Gene Black ~ Gene Black

Pamela Boatright ~ Pamela Quilts

Connie K Campbell ~ Freemotion by the River

Anja Clyke ~ Anja Quilts

Tina Dillard ~ Quilting Affection Designs

Becca Fenstermaker ~Pretty Piney

Jennifer Fulton ~ Inquiring Quilter

Barbara Gaddy ~ Bejeweled Quilts by Barb

Dione Gardner-Stephen ~ Clever Chameleon

Sarah Goer ~ Sarah Goer Quilts

Vasudha Govindan ~ Storied Quilts

Lori Haase ~ Dakota City Quilter II

Joanne Hart ~

Mania (Magdalini) Hatziioannidi ~ Mania for Quilts

Carla Henton ~ Create in the Sticks

Stephanie Jacobson ~ Steph Jacobson Designs

Connie Kauffman ~ Kauffman Designs

Joan Kawano ~ Moosestash Quilting

Kim Lapacek ~ Persimon Dreams

Emily Leachman ~ The Darling Dogwood

Leanne Parsons ~ Devoted Quilter

Bea Lee ~ BeaQuilter

Toby Lischko ~ Gateway Quilts & Stuff

Bill Locke ~

Denise Looney ~ For the Love of Geese

Leah Malasky ~ Quilted Delights

Sally Manke ~ Sally Manke

Maryellen McAuliffe ~ Mary Mack’s Blog

Kathleen McCormick ~ Kathleen McMusing

Carol Moellers ~ Carol Moellers Designs

Karen Neary ~ Sew Karen-ly Created

Lisa Nielsen ~ Lisa Lisa and the Quilt Jam

Jackie O’Brien ~ If These Threads Could Talk

Laura Piland ~ Slice of Pi Quilts

Michelle Roberts ~ Creative Blonde

Vicki Schlimmer ~ Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting

Gail Sheppard ~ Quilting Gail

Sherry Shish ~ Powered by Quilting

Anita Skjellanger , Quilt in a not-Shell

Laticia “Tish” Stemple ~ Tish’s Adventures in Wonderland

Jennifer Strauser ~ Dizzy Quilter

Jennifer Thomas ~ Curlicue Creations

Terri Vanden Bosch ~ Lizard Creek Quilts

Alison Vermilya ~ Little Bunny Quilts

Sandra Walker ~ mmm! quilts

Suzy Webster ~ Adventerous Applique and Quilting

Anne Wiens ~ Sweetgrass Creative Designs

Geraldine Wilkins ~ Living Water Quilter

Janet Yamamoto ~



Categories: AccuQuilt, Aurifil Threads, Hobbs Batting, Island Batik Ambassador, Island Batik Fabric, The Thrifty Quilter System, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

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