FRENCH COUNTRY LIFE

I pieced French Country Life in early 2013. I collect toile fabrics but can’t bare to cut them up for piecing. Plus they are so busy it is hard to work larger pieces of them into a quilt. So I decided to be “brave” and just cut up a piece of toile to go in this quilt.

Blue and yellow French Country Life

Many of the yellow and blue fabrics of the nine patches are reproductions of historic prints. Combined with the toile, I thought it would make a really historic looking quilt, especially if I hand quilted it.

I am going to admit that I didn’t measure correctly (a good reminder to measure twice and cut once) and the quilt ended up to big for my hand quilting frame.

The flip side of it being to big for my hand quilting frame is that I simply love the colors. It has a real “old world” feel and look to it. I can and have put it on the bed back side up for a different look.

French Country Life was machine quilted in an all-over wave design by RLM in May 2013, and it took me until Dec. 2013 to get the binding and tag done.

I made the binding from left over pieces of blue and yellow bindings from previous quilts.

The top is cottons, it has a poly batting and a blue/cream floral backing.

Backing and quilting design

The finished size is 102″ square.

Even if there are mistakes in your quilts, finish them. If you are happy with the end product – enjoy the quilt, show if off, and tell it’s story. If you are not happy with it, complete and give to a family member who does like it. Or donate it within your community. Quilts are comforting and snuggly even with mistakes.

More ideas for nine patch quilts. Also toile fabric:

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2011/12/nine-patch.html

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2011/12/nine-patch_17.html

https://indianaquilter40.com/collecting-toile-fabric-how-i-use-them-in-quilts/

AMISH 4 PATCH DOLL QUILT

AMISH 4 PATCH DOLL QUILT: A fun and easy project to make for the wall or a doll.

I pieced this a few years ago on one of my trips to Maine. It was easy and a great way to see if I liked the pattern in these colors.

Amish 4 Patch Doll Quilt

This was a the perfect size quilt to “stitch in the ditch” on my sewing machine It only took about an hour to pin and quilt. Then it went into the pile that just needed to be bound and get a tag. Of course, it got sucked to the bottom. When I found it a few months later, it only took a couple hours to hand bind.

The backing was a print of Amish life I found while at the quilt show in Paducah, KY. I only bought a yard and used most of it on this project.

Backing - scenes from Amish life

The finished size is 24″ x 28″.

The Amish 4 Patch Doll Quilt is currently hanging in my dining room and the colors just glow.

Another great thing about small quilts is that you can have a personal, rotating quilt show in your office or cubicle. At home, they make a great show on room walls or hallways.

I cut all the individual blocks rather than do the 4 patches using strips.  I was working with various scraps so it was easier just to do them as blocks.  However, the next time, I will sew the strips together and then cut the the blocks.

I learn something new with every quilt that I make.

I encourage quilters to do small projects as well as large ones. The small ones allow you to try a technique or color scheme before committing yourself to something large.

Here are some other ideas for small quilts:

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2011/03/four-patch-doll-quilt.html

https://www.favequilts.com/Miscellaneous-Quilt-Projects/Four-Patch-Quilt-Patterns

QUOTES TO START YOUR MONDAY

Quotes to Start Your Monday – The first day of the work week can be tough, after all, we would rather be quilting or doing something quilt related than going off to work. But we have to work to pay those bills and support our quilt habit – right?

Today, I just thought I would share a few of my favorite quotes that bring a smile to my face and encourage me as I am at work and wish I was quilting instead. Hopefully these quotes to start your Monday will encourage you as well.

QUOTES TO START YOUR MONDAY
Quote: Live. Laugh. Love....Quilt
Source: Pintrest
Quote: My mission in life is not merely to survive......
Quotes to Start Your Monday
Source: Pintrest
Quilt block with a quote.

Fellow Quilters, what are some of your favorite quotes?

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2018/11/just-for-fun.html

https://indianaquilter40.com/what-started-my-quilting-obsession/

Note: The Source for all the photos on this post are from Pintrest.

WEDDING QUILT (SIMPLE & PERSONAL)

What do you do for a wedding gift for a cousin who waited forever while finding the right guy and has a complete house already?? Make a wedding quilt of course !! This wedding quilt was simple and personal and super easy to make.

Wedding Quilt (Simple & Personal)

Cousin and hubby like to do road trips on the motorcycle, so that was the theme I went with. It’s not like they got a duplicate of this. They loved it.

Finished size: 70″ square.

For this quilt I purchased a yard of the center fabric and cut it square (so about 34 – 35″).  I added 5 borders in various widths (2.5″ to 6″) that coordinated with the center fabric until it was the size I wanted. In this case I wanted a big lap quilt that my cousin and her new hubby could snuggle under on the couch or recliner.

I cut and pieced this quilt in one day while in Maine in Sept. 2015.

Machine quilted by RLM in an all over stipple design.

This wedding quilt could easily be made in any theme or size depending on the need or fabric available. This is a super easy way to make a personal quilt for that special person in your life.

https://indianaquilter40.com/prayerful-leader-a-george-washington-quilt/

GRANDMA'S FLOWER GARDEN

Grandma’s Flower Garden – Many quilters like to do patterns that are vintage or traditional. Some like to use vintage or reproduction fabrics. That is what makes this small quilt fun – it is all 1930’s fabrics.

GRANDMA'S FLOWER GARDEN

All the fabric in this quilt is from feed sacks or 1930’s fabric my grandma gave me. My grandpa worked at the feed mill and he would watch for several bags that matched. He would buy the feed in those matching bags and bring it home for grandma to make clothing for the kids.

My mom told us many times that she would not do anything on the playground at school that might show her underwear because it was stamped with “flour” or “sugar”.

But what if I don’t have the real stuff to use in a project like this you ask? The first place I suggest is looking on Ebay or Etsy for the “real” stuff. If you can’t find something that suits, then try Missouri Star Quilt Company at https://www.missouriquiltco.com/shop/browse/30s-fabric. They have many reproduction fabrics that look similar to ones Grandma had.

I hand pieced the flowers using the English paper method. The flowers were then hand appliqued down to the background in 1997 – 98.

It was machine quilted by MG in 1998. I finally got it bound and made a tag for it in 1999.

Finished size is 30″ square.

GRANDMA'S FLOWER GARDEN backing.
The backing is a plain white feed sack with the brand logo on it.

The above picture is of the backing.

Grandma’s Flower Garden was a gift to a family member.

https://indianaquilter40.com/flowers-tumblers-or-scraps-are-taking-over-my-world-part-3/

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2019/07/grandmas-flower-garden-or-take-along.html

THE GREAT MIGRATION QUILT

The Great Migration Quilt is simply a combination of two sizes of Flying Geese blocks. The blocks are left-overs from two previous projects.

The Great Migration Quilt
Completed top – trying to get a photo between rain storms…

The “geese” started out as 5″ squares and 8″ squares that were sewn diagonally through the center to make two half square triangles (HST).

I sewed 10 of the bigger “geese” into three rows.

The two rows of smaller “geese” have 20 blocks in each. They did not quite fit right so I ended up adding about an inch of muslin to the end of each. Use those creative skills…

The small interior borders are simply three strips 1.75″ wide sewn together.

The burgundy exterior borders are 4″ for top and bottom, and 6″ for the two sides.

The top went together quickly since the “geese” blocks were already together or mostly together. I think it took me longer to add the borders. Simple and quick quilt.

HST waiting to be sewn into geese.
5″ blocks sewn into HST – waiting to be sewn into “geese”.
Flying Geese blocks.
Sewn into geese.

I did not buy anything for The Great Migration Quilt but the batting (even used a coupon). The geese blocks were left-overs from other projects. The borders were fabrics in my stash. The backing was the extra wide backing fabric that was already in my stash. It is a very satisfying feeling to know that I am using what is on hand.

Please don’t feel like you have to go out and purchase fabric for every quilt you make. Beautiful quilts can be made from the scraps and stash you already have on hand.

Https://indianaquilter40.com/flowers-tumblers-or-scraps-are-taking-over-my-world-part-3/

Https://indianaquilter40.com/night-flight

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2017/12/birds-in-air.html

GETTING MORE TIME TO QUILT

Clip art - triangle quilt block

Getting more time to quilt – in our crazy, busy lives this can pose a real problem. People have emailed me recently asking me how I get so much time to quilt each day. I don’t have any more time than you do.  However, I have learned to be a very good time manager and multi-tasker. We must make each minute count. Here are some simple things to help get more time to quilt each day.

Don’t:

compare what you get done or not to anyone else. None of us have the exact same responsibilities, schedules, or lives. Do what you can do. Remember that quilting is supposed to be fun.

Clip art - Never measure your progress using someone else's ruler.

get discouraged. Look at Pintrest, quilt shows, Facebook, magazines, books, etc as ideas for yourself. Look at the colors and patterns and enjoy.

Do:

keep several projects going simultaneously. I try to have a project in cutting stage, another in sewing stage, another in binding stage.  Also, one that can be completely by hand like English paper piecing or applique.

Tumblers and Hexagons are ready for sewing

always keep the sewing machine maintained and threaded so it is ready to be used whenever I(or you) have a few minutes.  Keep a project that is ready to be sewn beside the machine (right now I have a stack of tumbler blocks ready to go). I keep a container with all the pieces cut (and pinned) there ready to be sewn.

Get more time to quilt by being prepared.

use assembly line sewing if possible.

set a timer for small amounts of time to sew.  Even 5, 10, or 15-minute blocks give you a little more done on a quilt.

Making time to quilt - supplies are ready by sewing machine.
I have my timer set for 15 minutes and the project is ready to go.

limit social media and TV time.  If you are not good at this, set a timer and be firm with yourself about stopping when the timer goes off.

limit time talking on the phone, especially if you cannot multitask while visiting. I iron and sort fabric while on the phone. I put the phone on speaker while cutting.

Multi task while on phone.

keep a small project and supplies in a bag always ready to go along.  While waiting on the doctor, picking kids up, at the airport, at breaks between meetings, etc work on a project.  Small amounts of time add up quickly to a completed block or project.

Take heart:

Quilting should be fun. Even a few minutes each day brings enjoyment into your life. Have a wonderful day.

Other helpful ideas:

https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2019/07/waste-not-want-not-or-tips-for.html

HOW TO MAKE TWO DOLL QUILTS IN A DAY(Part 2)

How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 2). Do you want to involve the children in your life with your quilting? Involving the little people in your life into quilting can be so much fun. Last Friday, the grand (age 4) informed me very seriously that two of her “babies” did not have quilts. What is a grandma to do? Help the grand and her babies by doing a kid project – How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 2).

See Part 1 here for other photos and more directions: https://indianaquilter40.com/how-to-make-two-doll-quilts-in-a-daypart-1/

Note: These two doll quilts are intended to be used hard. They are well made, but not intended to have a long life span.

Can two doll quilts actually be done in a day with “help” from the little person? Yes, but don’t expect perfection or getting much else done.

In the post for Part 1 (see link above) we got one doll quilt done in the morning and had stopped to make mac and cheese for lunch (yep, the homemade stuff that is really cheesy and tastes wonderful on a cold day).

Step 1: Supplies

30 4″ squares

Enough fabric for 4″ wide borders (I had a little over half a yard)

Fleece cut bigger than the completed top

I had a bunch of left-over 4″ blocks from another project. The grand picked the red and purple blocks she liked for the rows. She also picked the Minnie Mouse border fabric. There was only 1/2 of a yard so it would have to be cut exactly to have enough. A piece of pink fleece would serve as both the batting and backing.

Here are the blocks sewn together:

All the blocks in the doll quilt sewn together.

Step 2: Sewing the blocks together

I machine sewed the completed “top” of blocks on each row to “quilt” it. This could also be done when sewing the rows together – I just like the stitching on the top where I can see it for these small projects.

My helper pulls out the pins as that part of the top comes through the machine and puts them in a magnetic cup. This is “her job” and she does it very well.

The grand-daughter pulling pins out of the doll quilt top as we sew.
The grand pulling out pins at the back side of the sewing machine.

Step 3: Borders

After machine quilting each row, lay the border on one side, sew it down, and fold over so the right side is out. On this quilt, I added a 4″ wide borders. I sew borders on opposite sides – in this case, I sewed the borders on the top and bottom. Then I sewed the borders on the two sides of the doll quilt.

HOW TO MAKE TWO DOLL QUILTS IN A DAY(Part 2)

Step 4: Binding

The self binding is simply folding the half inch of fleece over the top and zig-zag stitching down.

It took about two hours to complete this doll quilt by following the directions here and at part 1: https://indianaquilter40.com/how-to-make-two-doll-quilts-in-a-daypart-1/

The grand-daughter is pretty happy with another finished doll quilt. This one also somewhat matches one she and I made for her a month or so back – red and purple blocks with the same Minnie Mouse fabric as the border. Can’t beat having matching quilts!

Happy grand with second doll quilt made in a day.

Finished size: 27.5″ x 24.5″.

Hopefully this post, “How to Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1 & 2)” helps you make a quick and fun project for the little person in your life.

Other ideas for kid projects:

https://indianaquilter40.com/kid-project-button-quilt/

https://swoodsonsays.com/easy-quilt-projects-for-kids/

HOW TO MAKE TWO DOLL QUILTS IN A DAY(Part 1)

Do you want to involve the children in your life with your quilting? Yes, the projects and time have to be planned but involving the little people in your life into quilting can be so much fun. Last Friday, the grand (age 4) informed me very seriously that two of her “babies” did not have quilts. What is a grandma to do? Help the grand and her babies by doing a kid project – How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1).

Note: These two doll quilts are intended to be used hard. They are well made, but not intended to have a long life span.

Can two doll quilts actually be done in a day with “help” from the little person? Yes, but in my case it took a little cheating to cut off some time.

Step 1: Fabric.

I had a section of leftover bright blocks already sewn together. I let her pick the border fabric, so flamingos are the border. There was only 1/3 of a yard so it would have to be cut exactly to have enough. A piece of pink fleece would serve as both the batting and backing.

Supplies for this doll quilt: 3″ squares, one-third yard of flamingo fabric for border, and one piece of pink fleece 31″ x 23″.

Supplies for  How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1).
Supplies: pink fleece, flamingo border fabric, left over sewn together 3″ blocks.

Step 2: Cutting and sewing

Do the math to cut the fleece bigger than what you will need to include the blocks, border, and self binding. Once fleece is cut, center the (in this case) already sewn together blocks on it. We decided to machine quilt down the seams in one direction. This involved pinning, which she wanted to help with.

Pinning the top to the backing.
The grand “helping” pin the top to the fleece backing.
Close up of pinning.
One row machine quilted, and the next row pinned.
Ready to machine quilt the next row -  How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1).
Ready to machine quilt the next row.

As the sewn part goes through the machine, the grand pulls out the pins and puts them in a magnetic cup. The grand has done this so much that she is very good at it and she has stuck herself enough that now she remembers to always pull the pins out by the head. She has also been taught to never put her fingers close to the machine needle.

The grand-daughter helping with her doll quilt.
The grand is on the sewing table behind the machine pulling pins and putting in a magnetic cup.

Step 3: Borders

After machine quilting each row, lay the border on one side, sew it down, and fold over so the right side is out. I did a 2.5″ border on two sides and a 4.5″ border on the other two sides – using up the entire one third yard (whoo-hoo, no left over scraps).

Border pinned to fleece
Fabrics right sides together and pinned to fleece.
Blocks with border sewn on.
Border sewn on.

I sew borders on opposite sides – in this case, I sewed the 2.5″ borders on the top and bottom. Then I sewed the 4.5″ borders on the two sides of the doll quilt.

Step 4: Binding

Then I marked a half inch all the way around the top on the fleece (in this case with a blue ball point pen). Cut on the mark all the way around. The half inch of fleece will become the binding.

Half inch mark on fleece.
Marked half inch on fleece.

The self binding is simply folding the half inch of fleece over the top and zig-zag stitching down.

Close up of corner binding for - How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1). .
Corner folded over and sewn down.
Reverse side of HOW TO MAKE TWO DOLL QUILTS IN A DAY(Part 1)
Reverse side of doll quilt showing machine quilting.

It took about two hours to complete this doll quilt by following the directions here: How To Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1). We had it done in time to make homemade mac and cheese for lunch.

Finished size is 28.5″ x 20.5″.

 Grand showing off her complete quilt. HOW TO MAKE TWO DOLL QUILTS IN A DAY(Part 1)
The grand with her completed flamingo doll quilt.

Hopefully this post, “How to Make Two Doll Quilts In A Day (Part 1)” helps you make a quick and fun project for the little person in your life.

Other ideas for kid projects:

https://indianaquilter40.com/kid-project-button-quilt

https://swoodsonsays.com/easy-quilt-projects-for-kids/

https://www.quiltingcompany.com/kids-are-quilting-5-things-are-learned-teaching-kids-to-quilt-quilty-pleasures-blog/

SAILING SHIPS OF OLD QUILT (another panel quilt)

SAILING SHIPS OF OLD QUILT: The ship blocks are cheater blocks and the blue/gray alternate blocks look like waves. The red border around each ship was part of the panel. The border was a solid navy blue.

Quilt Sailing Ships of Old hanging on fence.

I like using panels for quilts – they make for a fun project and a way to save time on piecing or applique. Think outside the box and be creative.

My personal problem with fabric panels (maybe yours too) is that I see one, have some brilliant idea of how to use it, and buy it. The panel comes home, gets washed and dried, and is stored on a shelf for a weeks, months, or (gasp) years. By the time I find it again it is hard to remember why I bought it in the first place.

I solve this by keeping them together in one area, and when I want or need a quick project, the panels get pulled out. Then a choice is made, and the project is quickly finished, because of the size and there just is not that much of my sewing time involved.

Sailing Ships of Old Quilt was pieced in November of 1992, and machine quilted and bound in 1996 by BE (for the cost of $45). The quilting design was a sort of wave.

Finished size 70″ x 91″.

Cotton fabrics and polyester batting. The backing was a white flat sheet.

This quilt looked new when it was donated to a local charity in August 2002 for a raffle.

Clip art of old sailing ship

I did these two panel quilts. Hopefully they will inspire and encourage you to try something new with your own fabric panels:

https://indianaquilter40.com/proud-polar-bears

https://indianaquilter40.com/happy-bugs-quilt-or-a-fabric-panel-quilt/

Another example of a fabric panel quilt: https://indianaquilter40.blogspot.com/2019/08/cardinal-christmas-or-another-panel.html