Door Prize Gift

Drawstring bags by Sue
Drawstring bags by Sue

I received a small shipment of various items for the BAM 2022 door prize bags. Sue chose the In Color Order Drawstring bag pattern I have mentioned a few times and made some bags. We can use them for the door prize main bag or for holding smaller items.

I love the way Sue pieced some of the bags and also her fussy cutting. She said she will work on other projects for the door prizes in January.

I have to get myself together to organize the bags for the year. At the moment I have very few items to give away, but I can scrape together a bag for January. Then I’ll have plenty of time to worry about the rest of 2022.

Swap Gift

Swap pouch from Joelle
Swap pouch from Joelle

I totally forgot to post about the wonderful swap gift I got from Joelle at the BAM party the other day. This pouch looks like the Persimmon Dumpling pouch from Sew Sweetness, but it is actually the Dome pattern from Minkee Kim.I suppose there are only so many pouch shapes in the world.

Swap pouch from Joelle - interior
Swap pouch from Joelle – interior

Joelle described the construction and it seems a little different from the Persimmon Dumpling Pouches I made. This pouch has little shield in the bottom to keep things from falling out, I guess, which is clever.

Joelle said she didn’t like the way the zipper was put in. The technique leaves part of the zipper exposed. I can see what she means, but Joelle did a great job being precise about inserting the zipper so it looks nice and even.

Swap pouch from Joelle - zipper
Swap pouch from Joelle – zipper

Also, you can see in the interior view that the exposed zipper is not that noticeable.

I haven’t decided how I will use this pouch, but I have some hardware that might need a home.

Update on Ends Quilts

These quilts are all made from the edges that are cut off of other quilts as they are being squared up. Sometimes I make the backs larger than needed so I get some large-ish pieces back. Those pieces are hard to store, so making some donation quilts out of them is a good idea.

July 2021

Pop Parade Ends (n.10)
Pop Parade Ends (n.10)

Ends n.10 (Pop Parade)

February 2021

Ends n.9 quilted
Ends n.9 quilted

Ends n.9 – see more information

June 2021

Ends n.8 Finished
Ends n.8 Finished

Ends n.8 (Bonnie & Camille) – see more information. Since I only make the tops, they don’t always get done in order.

January 2019

Ends n.7 Donation Quilt
Ends n.7 Donation Quilt

Ends n.7 – see more information

October 2018

Ends donation top n.6
Ends donation top n.6

Ends n.6 – see more information

June 2018

Ends Donation Top n.5
Ends Donation Top n.5

Ends n.5 – see more information

March 2018

Ends n.4 Final
Ends n.4 Final

Ends n.4 – see more information. You can see that Ends n.3 and Ends n.4 are related.


Ends Donation Quilt n.3
Ends Donation Quilt n.3

Ends n.3 – see more information

July 2018

Ends n.2 donation quilt
Ends n.2 donation quilt

Ends n.2 – see more information

March 2017

Ends Donation Top - March 2017
Ends Donation Top – March 2017

Ends (n.1) – see more information – this is the top that started it all!

You could also put scraps together into strips, add some background and make one of these. These are very improv-y and there isn’t a pattern. It is a good way to do something good with fabrics I wouldn’t otherwise use.

Tim’s Improv Donation Top

Tim's Donation Top
Tim’s Donation Top

I finally got to work on Tim’s donation top. I can’t believe it was May when I worked on it last. Fortunately, it was only a week before that I started working on the piece.  Time is flying by.

I don’t think this is my best work. there are a lot of disparate elements. Somehow it works. It kind of looks like buildings surrounding a park to me.

I struggled with this piece, because of the green and orange. I don’t sincerely dislike green, but I don’t make it a main color in any of my quilts except the Improv Color quilts.  I also like orange, but somehow this was a struggle on which to work.

Tim's Improv Donation Back
Tim’s Improv Donation Back

The back went relatively fast. I took both pieces to Sew Day and gave them to Peggy and the team for quilting.

Missouri Star Block

Double Missouri Star
Double Missouri Star

I talked about one of the Triple Play Missouri Star videos in a recent Various & Sundry post. In this video, Jenny, Natalie and Misty take the same block pattern and make different quilts. I really liked what Natalie did with her version and I decided to try it out myself.

I thought it would be a quick test. Then I thought that I know how those quick “tests” go and started surfing around the Internet for fabric, thinking I would make an entire quilt. Fortunately, I got myself under control and decided to make one block with the True Kisses fabric I have and go from there. Cotton Cure still has packs of yardage.

I stopped and started the video as I followed along with the Missouri Star directions. Unlike other shows, Jenny and the gang tell viewers what sizes to cut, show you how to sew and press so you can follow along and make the block or quilt just from watching a free video. I like this about them.

Double Missouri Star center
Double Missouri Star center

The Missouri Star is a block they use for their logo. In this video they redid it. Jenny shrank the block and made a quilt from smaller versions. This version provided the directions for the center of Natalie’s block (above).

I didn’t choose good fabrics from the True Kisses line. There wasn’t enough contrast in the legs. Unfortunately I succumbed to the lure of those fabrics and the desire to just make something.

Trimming alternative
Trimming alternative

In the video, they show how to use the Clearly Perfect Trimmer**. I didn’t have that ruler so I tried their alternative method of using a regular ruler and it absolutely didn’t work. I should have saved myself the trouble and just squared up the various pieces the normal way.

My pieces were all the wrong size. Since I followed the Missouri Star method for making HSTs, all of my edges were on the bias. The small center block looked awful. I took the whole block apart, trimmed and put it back together again. I was reminded of how bias can work against me. I also think I didn’t completely understand the alternative method of trimming.

Using the Clearly Perfect Trimmer
Using the Clearly Perfect Trimmer

I did end buying the Clearly Perfect Trimmer**. I had never heard of this ruler and I was curious to try it out. I can’t really tell if it was any better than trimming the regular way. The one difference was that you only make two cuts vs making two cuts, turning your piece and making two more cuts.

I haven’t read all of the directions for this set of rulers, but I am interested in learning how to use more of its capabilities.

Despite all of the ripping, I am pretty pleased with the way the block came out. I won’t be making a whole quilt, however.






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Busy Quilt

LFL's Busy Quilt - front
LFL’s Busy Quilt – front

Lindsay sent me a picture of the ‘Busy Quilt’ she made for her toddler (my baby friend). What a great idea! It’s a really good idea for a baby gift if you want to make a gift for later – or you don’t get around to the gift until the baby is one.

It also reminded me of the Fidget Quilts that BAM made for people with Alzheimer’s. Lindsay’s, of course, is much more vibrant. The Tula Pink fabrics make the piece visually interesting.

There are also some differences. In the middle, there are clips to move around that section. This is something to watch out for when making it for a patient or a toddler. Nobody wants the recipient to choke. I am sure Lindsay knows Baby A well enough to put the clips on when she is old enough.

The bottom middle has woven yarn or string with beads and buttons to move over the yarn. There are also laces, which make me think of the Dressy Bessy-update pattern I bought. I never made it for my niece. Now, perhaps, I should make it for Baby A?

LFL's Busy Quilt - front excite
LFL’s Busy Quilt – front excite

Lindsay also used mesh to good effect. The bobbles are a great choice as are the Curiouser and Curiouser faces.

I am so fortunate to have such talented friends.

Another Mini Sew Day with Gerre

My view (Gerre's)
My view (Gerre’s)

I have a new, year long work contract that is going to be taking a lot of my time. Between the time I found out and the day I started, I had about two weeks where I finished other projects, sewed like a demon and saw friends. Fortunately, the COVID cases were down enough and we were all vaccinated, so I felt comfortable going to people’s houses. One thing I did was have a mini Sew Day with Gerre. Mostly we talk and eat, but this time we sewed quite a bit as well. Our last Sew Day was too long ago.

Finished Gelato at Gerre'ss
Finished Gelato at Gerre’s

I took my batch of Gelato strips to Gerre’s house and worked on sewing them together. The numbered pins really helped. In a flash, I was able to finish it. I think chatting and sewing made the project go faster.

Gerre held it up for me so I could take a photo. I was pleased to see that in different light and against a dark background, the quilt still glowed.

Gerre worked on her Ring quilt and was able to finish the top.

We had Thai food, which I like and don’t get a chance to eat very often.

More of Tim’s Improv

I am on the fence about how this quilt is looking. I don’t have the exact colors that Tim used, so I am using what I have. I don’t know if it is working.

Improv Checkerboard
Improv Checkerboard

When I talked about this quilt before, I had finished sewing the parts Tim gave me to the piece and had just added a strip of my own.

I made this improv checkerboard to add to the sides as the first piece that was all my own. It was kind of fun to play around with different sized strips. The green, however is a little more chartreuse than Tim used. While I like the shape, I am concerned about the colors and how they fit in with what went before.

I plan to put part of the checkerboard on another side perpendicular to the checkerboard I already sewed to the top.

Tim's Improv Quilt with checkerboard
Tim’s Improv Quilt with checkerboard

I don’t think it looks terrible and that might be good enough for a donation quilt. I don’t mean that it is ugly so it is only good enough for a donation quilt, but that it is not too ugly to give as a donation quilt.

I really don’t nee to make it much bigger, but I want it to have a relatively cohesive design without me spending 50 hours on it.

MLIS Quilt

MLIS Quilt
MLIS Quilt

This is not my work, except for the repair job I just finished. At some point this quilt got a rip in the border. I decided to take off the extra border and put a new binding on it. Sadly, I did not have enough of that fabulous green, but the red-violet looks good, I think

This was a gift from two of my sisters-in-law when I graduated from my Master’s program. I have a Master’s degree in Library and Information Studies from the University of California, Berkeley. At the time, the program was, what we in the business call, ALA accredited. That means that I can work in public and academic libraries, which require that accreditation. Sadly, I was in the last graduating class from that program. They have a School of Information, but no longer train librarians.

Anyway, this is an awesome snapshot of a time in my life. Each book represents a facet of my life and all are still important to me. The upper left shows the insignia of my sorority. Most of my good friends come from that experience. While you may think of ‘Animal House’ when you hear sorority, I met lifelong friends, received a scholarship which allowed me to complete my Master’s degree and learned what philanthropy was all about.

The upper right shows a book with my degree on the spine. I am the first person in my family to receive a Master’s degree. My dad would have preferred I became a salesperson, but I feel I have done well and been happy as a librarian.

The lower left represents the University of California, Berkeley. Many of the members of DH’s family have degrees from Cal, as it is affectionately named. I have both my Bachelor’s and Master’s from UC Berkeley. It is also the joint family activity to attend Cal football games. They generally do not do well, but hope springs eternal and stories about trips to bowl games are regularly recounted.

Finally, in the lower right is a book that says ‘QuiltNet’ on the spine. QuiltNet was probably the very first listserv, or email list about quilting. At that time, you had to find space on a server that would allow you to create an email list. You couldn’t create an account on and have an email list running in 10 minutes. I don’t remember very well how most people got their messages, but I remember logging into a UNIX server and reading messages using a tool called ‘vi’. No WYSIWYG! We talked about quiltmaking and described our quilts because there was no way to take a photo then attach it to an email message. It was a very vibrant list that led to a variety of friendships, exchanges and information about all sorts of quiltmaking topics. QuiltNet really opened up quiltmaking to me.

I am so pleased that I finished, finally, repairing this quilt. It has been on my list for ages. Now it is time to hang it up again so I can enjoy it.

Tim’s Improv Quilt

Tim's Improv Quilt top
Tim’s Improv Quilt top

Tim made part of a top in a Sherri Lynn Wood class. He didn’t want it hanging around anymore because he didn’t like the class and didn’t think he would finish it. I offered to finish it into a donation top for the guild and get it out of his life.

I sewed a strip Tim gave me to the right of the quilt (the strip with 4 patches). I looked for fabric that would match, but I couldn’t find anything really similar. I chose a more reddish orange and am adding various bits to the piece.

The picture, left, is what I have so far.

Latifah Saafir Class

Put a Ring On It Pattern
Put a Ring On It Pattern

Even though I can teach a vast number of quiltmaking skills, I don’t know everything. The guild hosted Latifah Saafir on Saturday via Zoom to teach us her pattern, Put a Ring on It*.

This pattern uses two of Latifah’s Clammies, the 12 inch** and the 8 inch**. I was super pleased to receive these as gifts between my birthday and Christmas.

The pattern is fairly complete and pretty easy to follow. The class was worthwhile, because Latifah gave us tricks and tips and helped us troubleshoot. The Clammy tool and the pattern really make this, essentially a Double Wedding Ring, pattern accessible to almost anyone. Obviously, I wouldn’t suggest it as a first quilt or if you haven’t tried curves, but otherwise, you can do it.

Martha Negley Vegetables
Martha Negley Vegetables

We had to select fabrics and cut pieces before class. I used an older Martha Negley fabric for the background. The background isn’t very much of the quilt. I wanted something different after looking at all the various versions of this quilt plus other DWR versions online. I didn’t want to make the traditional light background. I also didn’t want to copy the version on the cover. I thought of text prints for the rings, but defaulted back to my Frolic! color scheme with a variety of red-violets and the dark blue.

Two Rings Finished
Two Rings Finished

During class I was able to finish two rings. I wasn’t pleased with the green I chose for the squares. That was one good thing about being at home. I was able to grab some other fabrics and switch them out. I’ll mix up the rings so the green doesn’t look like big green blobs in the center of the quilt.

I am making a 9 block (1 ring=1 block) quilt. It will be about 48 inches x 48 inches. I didn’t want to commit to something larger and even this number of blocks is feeling like too much. I am going to power through. If I can get a ring a day done this week, I can finish all the ‘blocks’ by the end of the week and be ready to put the quilt together at the weekend. I don’t want this to become a UFO. I want to get it down and ready for quilting.

What I really wanted out of this class was to learn to use the Clammy rulers. I think I have started on that process, but didn’t get very far. This class was all about the Put a Ring On It pattern and making that. Learning various Clammy techniques was not on the agenda. That was sad. I hope Latifah comes up with a Clammy Sampler class. I get the sense that this tool is an awesome method for making circles in quiltmaking.








*No affiliation. Both a PDF and print pattern are available. I got the printed pattern and really liked the format.



**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Vintage Tuesday #2 Redux

Grandma Betty's Quilt - full
Grandma Betty’s Quilt – full

A long time ago I wrote about ‘Grandma Betty’s’ quilt. I finally asked my Mom about it. She said that Grandma Betty was our Great Grandpa George’s girlfriend. It was her car they drove from Chicago to Los Angeles. Apparently, she made this quilt for my Grama. Mom said that my sister has it now. It makes me really happy to know more about this quilt. I’ll try to find out more about Grandma Betty. I think she was long gone by the time my mom came on the scene.

Baby Improv Quilt

Tim's Improv Baby Quilt
Tim’s Improv Baby Quilt

Tim showed me the start of his baby quilt. He is making it loosely based on the Give & Take Quilt by Tara Faughnan. (You’ll have to do a search as there is no good way to link out to her site for a photo). I love his colors much more than in the original.

The blocks that look yellow are actually more of a chartreuse (icky green), which is one of Tim’s go to colors.

He is figuring out how to put this together as he goes along, which I applaud. I told him to tell me if he needed help, which may have been too smug as he is a very competent piecer.

DH Dancers

I may have mentioned that I tore a ligament in my foot in September. It is much better, but still improving. Earlier this week, I went to see my doctor to have it checked out.

One of the things about my doctor is that he is also an artist. He has his paintings hanging in his office. He has a small Artavita profile with a couple of his newest works. The bio he posted on his website mimics how I feel about my quiltmaking, especially where he talks about the flow. I agree with him that my work and my art are better when I do both and also that I get into a Zen-like state when I am sewing.

DH - Dancer Series #11
DH – Dancer Series #11

One of the things I noticed about the dancers in his office is the use of black. It offers an intensity and moodiness that is different than the look of ‘noir’ films, for examples. There isn’t a creepy sense of the psychological thriller in these paintings. I get the sense of the artist trying to show different types of people – dancers in this case.

I can’t stop looking at #11. I really want to know what the dancer is thinking. Is she angry? Is she annoyed that we have invaded during her practice?

Also, I think the juxtaposition of the black and ballet dancers is interesting. When I think of ballet (tutus, after all), I think of pink and baby blue flowing skirts or white stiff tutus. I don’t think of black. Most of the others in the series have black in them, but not all. Despite not all of them having black in the image, there is a consistency of style: straightforward, clear, slightly blocky (??). I get the sense that what you see is what you get, though there is a layer or two underneath the viewer needs to contemplate.

DH-Dancer Series #14
DH-Dancer Series #14

I like the tutu in #14 very much. I also like the pose, especially the hands around the back.  I also want to know what is going on with this dancer. My doctor is not a writer, but I would love to hear the story of all of these dancers.

I am always pleased when I find out someone has a passion to which they are dedicated. I feel like I am getting through this pandemic because I can sew as much as I want or all the time. I feel like quiltmaking is a way to stay on track, not get depressed and makes me a better person. I have to figure out problems, choose fabrics that go together, design projects. While I am doing all of those things, I don’t think about staying home all the time, not seeing family and friends.

By seeing my doctor’s work, I can see how he is a better doctor because of his art. He can talk to me on a level that is professional, but also human and I appreciate that.

Quilt Class via Video

I started teaching another quilt class via Zoom a few weeks ago. We started on Google Hangouts/Meet- whatever and that was terrible. My screen kept freezing and the experience was terrible. I bought a Zoom subscription and everything has been better.

My goal in the class is to teach my students all the skills they need to make any block they want – or any quilt they want. Both have already decided that they love quiltmaking, so I don’t have to worry about that.

I have taught basic quiltmaking before, but never via video. It is a different experience and I find the demos challenging. Thank the stars for the web, because I am able to find publicly posted videos to stand in for live demos.

My students are AWESOME. They are energetic and enthusiastic and I look forward to our sessions very much.

As of this writing, we have had about 7 classes and they have done a lot of learning, practicing, sewing and listening. The class started off with supplies, fabric choices, how to shop online and color. We subsequently talked about accuracy, block structure, fraying and ripping. The blocks start off very basically with squares. Then we move on to triangles and curves. Eventually, we will get to techniques like Y seams, applique’ and hexagons. I want the class to be comprehensive. I am willing to put in the hours it takes to prepare the presentations and my students seem to be prepared to do the homework.

The whole process has been very gratifying.


If you want me to teach you via Zoom, contact me at poste [at] artquiltmaker [dot] com.