The Seedling Quilts Book

August 17, 2019

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This beautiful book came a while back and I’ve slowly been enjoying some hand sewing all summer long. Jodi of Tales Of Cloth has beautiful patterns and English Paper Piecing designs in her shop and her book is no different.

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The Seedling Quilts book has a gorgeous sampler quilt along with all the individual blocks made up into their own quilts. You can take her designs and EPP a whole quilt or make a smaller project which is what I have done.

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I loved the look of this Honeycomb design and was so pleased to find they came together really quickly especially since I decided to make a very long table runner.

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I’ve wanted to pair Liberty fabrics with classic ticking for a while now and decided this would be the perfect project to run with and I couldn’t love it more!

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I decided for durability and time that I would machine sew the finished Liberty piece onto the runner using a soft white Aurifil thread.

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And because I wanted to give the smaller honeycomb papers a try I made place mats as well. Only four so far but I’ve got more on my stand to keep working at the rest. For these I used a natural linen with a ticking back on each mat.

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My color pallet here was intentionally random to let the eclectic Liberty prints and colors really shine in all their individual glories. I think it brings a fun feel to our Victorian dining room.

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If you’ve never tried English Paper Piecing I highly recommend starting with Jodi’s help either from her book or right from her shop. Her instructions are clear and the templates and papers just work really nicely. Remember my Mandolin quilt I finished this year? That was all her pattern and guidance!

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Most of these prints can be found at Ava and Neve or Duckadilly Fabrics. I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and leave here feeling inspired to try something creative of your own. To see the rest of the Seedling Quilts projects, follow Jodi on Instagram and stay tuned for a sew along she will be hosting just in time for Fall sewing.

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Merry And Bright Collection

August 7, 2019

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Hi there! Over here we are busy wrapping up Summer and sadly getting ready for the start of another school year, and while the temps in the Midwest are still sunny warm, my sewing room has been all Christmas!

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When I saw this Merry and Bright Collection by Dani Mogstad for Riley Blake Designs, I jumped at the chance to play with it. The colors are perfect and the prints have this beautiful vintage look to them.

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I wanted to make a simple quilt block that would show off the prints really well, I almost went with a basic large scale patchwork to let the prints really shine but landed on this block called First Place from Emily Dennis‘ book Modern Quilts Block By Block. It ended up being really easy because of the way Emily has her patterns laid out. I just love the look of all these blocks together.

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Ahhhh! Makes my Christmas loving heart happy! I love the mix of greens from dark to light along with the pop of pinks and red. The low volume prints are a must in any winter fabric stash, I’ll be ordering more of those!

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I used a soft cream solid from RBD to match the retro feel of the colors. Each block is 15 inches and this generous lap quilt measures 60×75.

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The backing is a small red gingham that I just fell in love with and for binding I used several of the green prints. I kept the quilting simple with wavy vertical lines every three inches using a soft cream Aurifil thread (2000).

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I couldn’t possibly choose a favorite print from this line, the gifts, the vintage looking ornaments and cars with trees tied on the tops, the adorable deer and the larger scale print with Santas and snowmen, all so perfect!

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Now I’m ready for a cup of hot coco and a cozy fire with this quilt! Well, almost ready!

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How cute would Christmas clothes be in this line!? A family of matching pajamas or dresses and shirts? There is even an adorable ready to sew advent calendar! Really with a line this cute you can’t go wrong! Check your favorite quilt shops now for Merry and Bright and get a head start on your Holiday sewing!

Season’s Greetings Quilt

July 19, 2019

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The newest Liberty Of London Lasenby cotton is here and just in time for all your well planned Holiday sewing dreams! Season’s Greetings is a smaller line with just 12 gorgeous prints, the perfect balance of old Liberty classics and more modern prints and colors. Several have a metallic sheen to them that is extra fun!

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For such a classic line I wanted to make a really special quilt that could be hand quilted and loved forever. I chose this January block  that I had seen from Mary Dugan of Sunny Day Supply and was so inspired by. It proved to be more difficult than I had expected, full disclosure: almost none of my points lined up. Newsflash; nobody cares and it still looks beautiful!

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It was so much fun to watch the shapes take place as I added each block in.

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I used several Aurifil 12 weight threads to hand quilt in big messy stitches, dark green, golden yellow for the centers and a maroon which all show though beautifully on the back.

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You know it’s a special quilt when you bring it all the way to Vermont so you can take pictures of it on a beautiful old barn! Totally worth it!

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I love how this line is perfect for the whole Winter and Holiday season, not just Christmas which means I can keep it out for longer than just the month of December. The texture that hand quilting adds is just dreamy! For this quilt I also tried a cotton batting from Quilters Dream that was dreamy to work with!

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My blocks are 12 inch square and the quilt finishes at 60×72 perfect for the couch.

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This silver Blossom fabric by The Tattooed Quilter is just the bit of sparkle this quilt back needed to let those hand stitches shine!

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I never hand stitch my binding because I don’t take the time for it but also my machine stitches hold up better in the long run, this time however I was inspired by my friend Cheri and had to add even more stitches which were totally worth the extra bit of time it took.

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I love the colors and designs in this collection and just feel so pleased with how this quilt turned out! One of my favorite finishes this year for sure!

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My Liberty loving heart is happy and just as soon as Fall comes this quilt is going out on my couch spot! (Who am I kidding!? It’s out already!).

Dorothy’s Journey

July 1, 2019

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I am so excited to share this fabric collection with you all! As soon as I saw Dorothy’s Journey by Jill Howorth for Riley Blake Designs I jumped at the chance to work with it! The sweetest illustrations from a classic story with loads of my favorite color greens.

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The greens of course are always the first to catch my eye but now that I’m looking at the pictures the blues are just as striking to me. The pops of pink and yellow are just the balance this line needed, perfect for boys, girls and grown ups!

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Jill has such adorable illustrations in all of her lines but this one may just take the cake! She went with the classic book for her inspiration and kept Dorothy’s shoes silver and they actually shimmer along with other pops of glistening silver on many of the fabrics.

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This cloud print has the most sheen to it which I just loved but didn’t include in my quilt, I’ll be using it on my next quilt with the leftovers from this one.

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Right away I knew I wanted to make a quilt with this line (no surprise there, right?) but I had the hardest time choosing a pattern that would be simple enough to let the fabrics shine and easy enough that I could whip it up in less than a week!

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I found inspiration from Heidi Staples (Fabricmutt) and her tutorial for a pillow which can be found HERE. I enlarged the block by starting with a 9×4.5 print and two 4.5 low volume fabrics, the quilt is a nice throw size at 60×68

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The retro glam feel of the quilt is just the look I wanted to showcase this classic fabric line and it came together so smoothly and lightning quick.

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You can see the block is a simple rectangle and is easy enough to customize any size you want. The low volume prints are a sliver and black Blossom and a white on white gingham from Riley Blake.

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For quilting I went with wavy lines in a coordinating green 28 weight Aurifil thread (2845) and the binding and backing of course had to be gingham!

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I think the touch of black gingham binding frames the whole quilt out nicely, I just love these tiny 1/8 inch gingham prints.

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I finished up this quilt last night and was using it immediately and this morning when I came downstairs I found one of my boys snuggled up in it, those are my favorite kind of makes, cozy and heartwarming.

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And lastly, just look at that adorable salvage edge! A rainbow of tiny Toto’s!! I have a stack of leftover half square triangles from this quilt that I will make up into a child size quilt and this bit of edge will be used in it, too cute!

Follow Jill Haworth and Riley Blake for more Dorothy cuteness!

 

Loyal Heights Project Tour

June 13, 2019

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Hi friends! Welcome to my stop on the Loyal Heights project tour for Quilting In The Rain Jera’s newest fabric line. I have been lucky enough to play with a few of her lines in the past as well as contribute a quilt to her second book Quilt As You Go Made Vintage.  This time around I was taken away by the beautiful range of colors, especially those peachy pinks!

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I decided to make a runner using the QAYG method and improv log cabin blocks. I cut my strips 2 inches wide and 1.5 wide placed around blocks of 2.5 inch and 4.5 square for lots of variety to choose from.

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I added bits of decorative machine stitching on each block as well as a couple of the cute salvage bits with the golden umbrellas just for fun. The tiny gold heart prints are some of my favorite prints along with the fruit print and the more low volume floral ones.

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I used all the leftover green prints for the binding to frame it out nicely. If you have yet to try Jera’s Quilt As You Go sewing method, I highly recommend it, whether you are going for a classic look or a more modern quilt block, shes got you covered with both of her books!

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More sparkly umbrellas and tiny gold hearts, such a sweet line!

I wanted to make one more small make to show off these cute prints and was just in time to pattern test for my friend Melissa!

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This tiny Caravan Pincushion was just the right thing to use up the last of my favorite peachy low volume print with tiny leftover scraps for the rest. You can find the pattern from Melissa available soon.

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This runner works well in my sewing room as well and I think it’s just the touch of Spring colors this room needed. Be sure to follow Jera to see all the beautiful projects on this tour.

 

Anna Maria Horner Showcase

May 13, 2019

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Well this was fun! Free Spirit Fabrics along with Aurifil Thread and Anna Maria Horner teamed up for a special showcase with some of the Aurifil artisans. We were each sent three fat quarters of Anna’s Passionflower line and a coordinating thread, I requested mine to be a 12 weight so that I could add some hand stitching to my project.

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I had no idea what I would make with my fabrics, maybe a tea towel or coasters but when I saw these beautiful fabrics I decided to go big! I fussy cut a large floral collection from one of the prints and machine stitched it to another.

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The striped fabric really spoke to me and I wanted something that would be in and around our home in constant use. It also plays well as a summer patio pillow to brighten up our outdoor space.

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I used the Aurifil 12 weight thread (color 1148) to outline the applique flowers and add some subtle decorative stitching on the stripes. I have been loving working with 12 weight and adding hand stitches to ALL the projects, it’s a simple way to ramp up any handmade project and give it that extra bit of “wow” factor.

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I used the entire fat quarter for the front, only cutting off the salvage so the pillow measures about 21×18 which I was able to use a $2 Ikea pillow insert bunched up a bit. I am so happy with how this turned out that I will have to make more for around our home! Who knew that all it took to make a great pillow was three fat quarters!

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For the back I used all of the third fabric in this beautiful gray and added a panel of the floral for my pillow pocket. I made the pocket extra deep for stuffing that bigger pillow in.

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Detail of my big wonky stitches. The colors in this fabric are simply stunning and a pillow is an easy way to add a pop of color to any room (or patio)!

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I brought the pillow in when it started raining and it goes well with our favorite ratty old chair in the living room as well. Later in the day I found my oldest cozied up with it on the couch which filled my heart FULL. I suppose it can’t be helped in this house, handmade things just seem to travel about from room to room as needed.

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Thank you for stopping by, I hope you have enjoyed what you see and leave here feeling inspired. Be sure to follow along with Aurifil Thread, Free Spirit Fabrics,  Anna Maria Horner and myself on Instagram for more ideas and inspiration!

 

 

Kindred Spirits Quilt

May 9, 2019

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Anne Of Green Gables has a special place in a lot of our hearts, I believe it was one of the first movies I watched as a girl and the first that I watched over and over and played out the scenes with my sister and our friends when we were a bit older. Later came the Avonlea show and my mom reading the rest of the series to us. I think it’s safe to say that an Anne fabric line would be a must have for a girl like me especially when it includes the perfect shades of green.

IMG_1573 Jill Howarth is an illustrator of all things sweetly adorable and has been designing fabrics with Riley Blake since 2017. For this line I wanted a block that would show off her illustrations as the focal point so the economy block was a perfect fit. I added some solid pink cotton and a leftover blush Linen for the background and hoped it wouldn’t be too much pink.

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In the end I added several solid blocks of the soft pink fabrics to give the eye a place to rest as well as the bright pink blocks to add a pop of color. These solid blocks add another design to the pattern as well but are placed randomly.

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It’s an eye spy quilt of Anne and friends! I added simple quilting in a pale pink (2410) Aurifil thread to frame each center block. The backing had to be a green with white dots and it goes so sweetly with all that pink.

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Green Gables set in a field of flowers, wouldn’t these fabrics make the sweetest Summer dresses for girls?

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Anne and Diana, the original Kindred Spirits! I think this one is them meeting in secret to trade locks of hair or perhaps on a slow walk home from school, stopping to pick flowers along the way.

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And then there are the classic Anne quotes, sweet in childhood and still ringing true decades later.

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My blocks are 6 inches each finishing this quilt at the perfect child size of 42×54, great for keeping handy to snuggle under with a favorite copy of Anne of Green Gables.

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Now I just need to decide which of my many nieces would most love this quilt, after all the joy is in the making AND gifting.

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Be sure to follow Riley Blake and Jill Howarth on Instagram for more beautiful fabrics! I am excited to be working with her next line as well, stay tuned!

 

 

My Heather Ross Norah Quilt

April 10, 2019

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I managed to get some beautiful photos of my log cabin block quilt and thought I would post a gallery here. The #sunnylogcabinsal hosted by my friends at Sunny Day Supply has been so much fun not only to sew with but also to see all the other beautifully inspiring makes. I decided to go with the “Nora” version where the whole quilt is one big block since I had been wanting to make one for years after seeing Mary’s original Norah quilt. I am just so glad I did, it was such a fun easy make and what better fabric to use than my long hoarded Heather Ross collection. I say long but actually by the time I started sewing many of Heather’s fabrics were hard to find and well out of my price range, but thanks to friends for sharing bits and pieces with me over the year I do have a nice stash! I went with 2 inch strips that finish at 1.5 and the whole quilt top is about 74.5 inches square. Since this quilt is just for my family, I took the liberty of using all the tiny parts I wanted to including salvages, tiny scraps and pajama pieces that I took apart with a seam ripper. This quilt is full of happiness for me, my boys keep asking when I am going to finish it as its already their favorite quilt. I plan to take it with me to Vermont this summer to hand quilt while I chat and visit with the dearest group of sewing friends imaginable, then not only will my quilt look beautiful but it will also hold the memories of laughter shared in the stitches.

Enjoy!

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An Unintended Curve: Linen Quilt

April 2, 2019

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I had been dreaming of making a whole cloth linen quilt for a while now, I kept seeing them in home magazines with their perfect diamond grid quilting and just enough wrinkles to give that warm inviting look. When Riley Blake Designs asked about working on a linen project I jumped at the chance to make my own perfectly quilted linen throw for my bed. It’s funny how plans change…

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With the dreamiest soft Blush pink linen cotton blend I set to work, marking out several grid lines in one corner to make sure I was getting the size and look I was going for then decided to use my quilting guide the rest of the way. I used a pale pink Aurifil 40 weight (2410) thread that matched the linen perfectly and set to work, my one problem was a lack of spray baste on one side in which I was basically spraying air for the last half of the quilt. It wasn’t until I was finished quilting that I realized there was a subtle curve to the bottom half of my grid lines! I can just hear my grandma saying “Oh horrors!”. I had intended this project to be a simple quick finish with clean lines but the quilt as it was simply wouldn’t do.

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I made the quick decision with the encouragement of my dear sewing friends to add hand stitching to accentuate the curve. Now not only would I be embracing the flaw in my work, it would now be the focal point OF my work. I chose a modern collection of pink Aurifil 12 weight threads ranging from deep wine to pale dusty and ended with a golden yellow ( colors: 2468, 4030, 4020, 2440, 2445, 5015).

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I added six rows of each color following the grid lines up, not taking too much care with my stitches some being a bit larger and some very tiny for a deliciously handmade look. This also freed me up to just enjoy the process of hand quilting rather than trying for a more uniform look. The stitching went so smoothly through the linen fabrics and cotton batting that it really was a pleasure and I finished it up in just one week, that’s quick even for me.

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The overall look is not at all what I set out for but somewhere along the way, in all those tiny crossed stitches I fell in LOVE. Instead of seeing the shape of my original quilt lines going from square diamond to rectangular diamond to flat sideways diamond-ish shape, the focus is on the texture of the the gorgeous linen, hand quilting and that ever subtle curve.

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It wasn’t until I was almost finished with the hand stitching that I drew the line from this little quilt to my own personal life. We make plans, we draw up lines for how we see our lives going and yet somewhere along the way there’s a curve, a bend in the road, a “flaw” that wasn’t supposed to be there. I’ve been drawing the lines from quilting to deeper thoughts for a while now as I navigate the waters of my life and have found there are so many lessons the art of sewing can teach if I am willing to learn.

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As a self taught/still learning quilter I am usually ready to embrace a change to plan, I almost never unpick stitches and am always eager to see each project unfold before me. I consider myself sort of a co-creator of my work, me doing my part to make something beautiful, the fabric, thread and needle doing their part as well. I suppose it also helps that I am anything but a perfectionist to!

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But when it comes to my own personal life and the curves thrown at me I tend to buck up and resist change from what my original plans were. I can just see it in my mind; me with life’s seam ripper in hand trying to undo the curves that have come my way not wanting to accept them for their potential beauty, only seeing them as flaws; this isn’t how it was supposed to be!

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As I added my last rows of hand stitching on this pale soft linen, seeing this quilt not for what it could have been or SHOULD have been, but seeing it as a beautiful handmade work of art. It dawned on me that I had added beauty, stitch by stitch to a flawed curve in my work and ENJOYED doing it. Had I fought against the curve, spent days unpicking my work in an effort to stick to what I thought it should be, I would never have this beautiful one of a kind quilt. Maybe the lesson here for me is embracing the curves life has thrown my way, adding beauty in the ways I can and stop fighting for what maybe, just MAYBE wasn’t meant to be. Unlike setting down a seam ripper, I have no idea what that actually  looks like in reality, BUT I am willing to learn and just as I am a sort of co-creator in my handwork, I to am a co-creator in my life, willing to try my best and let God work out the rest, curves and all.

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There are so many lessons to learn from needle and thread and I feel I have only just begun.

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The back side of this quilt shows off a simple running stitch, the linen/cotton combo (55%/45%) makes for such a soft finish I almost think this should be a new baby quilt at 43×56 it’s perfect size too! Search for Riley Blake Linen to see their beautiful range of colors. As always I hope you have enjoyed what you see here and feel inspired to try something new of your own, maybe even an unintended curve too.

 

 

 

 

Liberty Pin Cushion Sale

March 9, 2019

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I wanted to drop in over here to let you know about my Liberty Pin Cushion sale happening over at my Instagram shop @faithessenburgshop on Monday March 11 at 10 am CST! I haven’t held a sale in well over a year and I am so excited about all the pretty pin cushions I have for you!

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My Original Liberty egg cup pin cushions that started it all almost exactly two years ago! I just love these little classy cups and I know you do as well!

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I was extremely disappointed to learn I can no longer find this style dish for my double Pinnies, they were perfect for keeping a spool of thread or thimble in the extra cup spot. I will have a few available on Monday and then they are gone! While I was sad to loose these, I have found two new styles that I hope you will love as much as I do.

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This sleek modern dish pairs beautifully with the classic Liberty prints we all love and has an added bonus of being magnetic to hold pins, clips and things while you work!

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I could not love these little dishes more! At just under four inches square and two high, they are the perfect little sewing companion to hold your sewing notions.

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For this Original Liberty Pinnie dish debut I have pulled out some of my rare and hard to find Betsy prints, a few of which are pictured here along with classic Betsy colorways.

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I am also giving this oval style a try and while they are not magnetic bowls, the dish is big enough to hold several clips or even a spool of thread. I think the ridges in the bowl will be handy for getting clips out too.

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Here’s a little custom beauty I made this week for a special order. Pop on over to @faithessenburgshop and follow along so you don’t miss any of the sale information and set your clocks for Monday March 11 at 10 am CST! See you there!