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Scrappy Lone Star Table Topper

Scrappy Lone Star Table Topper

I’ve always admired Lone Star quilts and have been meaning to figure out how to make one so here is my first attempt. This is also my first time using a walking foot, something I’ve been lacking for way too long.

I’ve started another and have photos to show the process. It isn’t difficult but keeping the layout in mind when you are offsetting the strips boggled my mind. My solution was to draw a grid and place tiny bits of fabric on it. When I liked my layout I took a photo so I would have the layout saved. It also helped me determine how I would do the strip sets.

Diamond grid with fabric scraps

Diamond grid with fabric scraps

I made a quick mockup of the finished star point from the scraps with my cutting diagram.

Mock up and cutting diagram

Mock up and cutting diagram

I cut my fabric strips 2″ wide following the guide I made. I didn’t end up with enough to make a full 8 pointed star, so I know I would need to double this amount to do that. I only wanted half a star to begin this so I was fine with that.

Again referencing my guide, I sewed my strips together in the order shown. One thing I did differently from most of the pattern directions I’ve seen is to sew the pieces flush at one end, rather than staggered. This way, I can square up both ends, and after making my first cut at 45 degrees I can take the trimmed off piece and re-attach it to the other end. I failed to get a photo of this step.



Strips cut and  ready to be sewn together

Strips cut and
ready to be sewn together

All sewn together

All sewn together

I’m using this in a lap quilt. I’ve created a diamond grid using the same cutting angle – 45 degrees- and sewing them together with narrow sashing strips.

Making the diamond grid

Making the diamond grid


Closing in on the finish. All pieced and ready for quilting.

Closing in on the finish. All pieced and ready for quilting.

I’m at the quilting stage, so can only give you a preview of the quilt top.

What I’ve learned from this quilt:

Starch the heck out of your fabrics before cutting and as you go along. Every block is cut on the bias and dealing with the stretch can make you tear your hair out, I promise.

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Happy New Year!

Time flies when you’re having fun. This month has whizzed by with all of the family gatherings, holiday parties, and the after effects.  I’ve spent my time since Christmas learning to use new toys and haven’t done any quilting at all. Sigh…..

I have done plenty of cooking though, and wanted to share a new salad recipe with you. I do love salads and will throw most any leftover into them, so this salad is a result of that.

Holiday Salad-

A big bowl of salad greens – you decide the size and adjust the other ingredients.

fresh garlic, smashed and minced, to taste. I use a lot (4 large cloves for 2 people)

shaved feta cheese, or crumbles, what ever you have

home made whole cranberry sauce – about 1 T per serving

salt, freshly ground pepper

1 T olive oil per person and a generous drizzle of balsamic vinegar

Top with croutons or toasted almond slices

well, my photo won’t upload at the moment so you are just going to have to use your imagination. I trust you all can do that!!!

Happy New Year

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Baby, it’s cold out there!

That's ice built up on the street.  brrrrrrrrrrr

That’s ice built up on the street.

Good morning! Just wanted to share this picture.

Stay warm!




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Snowball Stars

I was at a stopping point on my fan quilt since I ran out of thread so I started a new quilt, a small quicky to be gifted. It’s a star quilt based on a snowball block. It goes together so quick and easy. I’ve never made one like this, but when I heard about it, I knew it was something I needed to try. I used scraps for the stars and sashing, and the background fabric was only about a yard. The finished quilt is 36″ x 36″.

Scrappy Snowball Star Quilt

Scrappy Snowball Star Quilt

Isn’t it cute! I quilted only the larger areas, but it should hold up fine. It’s in the wash as I write this.

I’ve discovered that thread can get super expensive. A  standard spool of thread these days is 250 yards and is normally priced about $3.50. When you consider that I used about 3600 yards of thread in my last full size quilt you begin to see what I mean. That’s 14 spools of thread, or almost $50 (before tax). I’ve started buying it online at Connecting Threads at a considerable savings. Their cotton thread comes on a 1200 yard spool for less that $3 dollars. Even with shipping I save a good deal.

 R eady for quilting

Ready for quilting

You may be able to tell that I am going to do a Quilt as You Go.  The blocks are 17″ square and the quilt will end up being about 87″ x 100″. That’s way too big to quilt on my home machine. I did wrangle a queen size but it was a struggle. So, I think this should method work out nicely. I’ll keep you posted.

The holidays are just around the corner, and much as I hate to, I think I need to spend a bit of time getting things straightened up around here. Knock down a few cobwebs and put up a tree. Why not, tis the season! Much to be thankful for.

‘Til next time, keep some art in your heart!

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Arts and Crafts fun

This gallery contains 9 photos.

Yesterday I spent a good bit of time selecting artwork to take to the new gift shop at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center, aka FWCAC. Wouldn’t it be great if some of it sold! Took a medley of things, … Continue reading

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Quilting Adventure

I’ve started another quilt and it is turning into quite the quilting adventure. Such fun, such frustration!

I saw a quilt online that I really liked, sort of a modern fan quilt, and decided to try my hand at something similar. I lost the link to the original post (which had a tutorial) and couldn’t relocate it, but thought I could recreate it with out their instructions. Well, I’ve never made a fan quilt before so it has been quite an adventure trying to get this to work out the way I wanted.

I have been hoarding this lovely saffron fabric and finally thought this would be the perfect project for it. My thought was that 4 yards would be plenty for the background. That was not true. My measurements obviously were wrong! I also decided that I would put squares in the centers rather than applique circles. NOT a smart move. That brings me to where I am  now. I have 16 full size fan blocks and 8 half fans, and it’s time for another decision. Do I add sashing or not? I am going to add boarders, since I don’t have enough blocks to make it the size I want.

Auditioning fabrics for the fan quilt

Auditioning fabrics for the fan quilt

I picked colors for the fans by laying them out on the saffron. I measured several of the fabrics and designed my block based on fabric measuring 42″ wide after cutting off the selvedge. Turns out this was a mistake too, since some of them were closer to 40″, meaning I didn’t get as many fan blades from those narrower fabrics. Sigh.

Circular fans cut to be octagons.

Circular fans cut to be octagons.

I am actually glad that my plan to put squares in the center didn’t work out. I went through the audition process again, trying to find a fabric that would work as the center of the circle. I had a piece of green that I picked up at a garage sale. I’ve regretted that purchase since I got home with it, thinking it was an ugly green, but it was the only color that said “use me!” when I laid the fabrics out. It seems to act as a neutral.

Here is where I’m at in this adventure…… trying to decide if the blocks should have sashing. If so, I will use the green. If not, should I put a green dot at the intersections?



Do I use sashing?

Do I use sashing?

Trying to visualize how it will look if add sashing strips. My original plan was to have them without.

No sashing.

No sashing.

IF I sew the blocks together without sashing they will look something like this.

And my last photo is an alternate plan, to sew without sashing but add a green dot at the intersection point. s-20131122_IMG_4102This is the one I am favoring at the moment.  What do you think?

If you have an opinion, please feel free to chime in, I would love to hear from you.



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