29 July 2016

Black Birds in Blue {redo}



Before I realized that I would be manning a vendor booth at the International Plowing Match in Harriston in August, I had listed my Black Bird baby quilt in my Etsy shop. And it sold at the end of June.

Because the Black Bird pattern has been one of my more popular patterns, I wanted to have a sample to hang in the booth. So after finishing the piecing for the MOD Bear Paw quilt top, I started piecing a new Black Bird quilt. This one featuring a blue bird in place of the red bird in the original quilt. And using a light silver for the background.

As soon as I had finished the original quilt I immediately wanted to make one with a blue bird. So I really enjoyed making this quilt once more!




Unlike the great big MOD Bear Paw, with a quilt this size, I can easily baste right at home on my kitchen table. Except for the backing, this quilt was made entirely from selections from Northcott Fabrics





The quilting took no time at all. I used a Light Grey Omni from Superior Threads. Both on top and in the bobbin. 




Each bird block finishes at 6" square after applying the sashing strips.





I've had this backing fabric in my stash for a long, long time. And am so pleased with how well it blends with the fabrics from the top and the binding. It is Minimalista by AGF Studio.





This quilt will be featured in my booth at the upcoming International Plowing Match in Harriston, Ontario this August 19 and 20th. If you're free, please make plans to come and drop by, if you can. I would love to meet some bloggy friends!






The "Black Birds" baby quilt finished at 40" x 46"
and was the 6th use of my 2nd edition of 100 labels
ordered from Ikaprint.









Linking up to Finish it up Friday with 

Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts






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27 July 2016

Let's Bee Social #135

Welcome to the Let's Bee Social!

THANK YOU!!! to all who volunteered to help test the new pattern designs I showed last week. Not only have these kind and helpful ladies given me prompt and well thought out feedback on the patterns, they have also given me an indication of which patterns appeal to the largest majority of quilters who have responded. Turns out the Kissy Fishy is a clear winner!

Meanwhile, I just announced the long awaited finish of my MOD Bear Paw quilt yesterday. And will be soon sharing a remake of my Black Birds quilt in anticipation of the event coming next month.

Now.....  I can't wait to tear into some fresh fabric and get to making one of those new designs myself! The Ay, Chihuahua! pattern is next in line. I just think those wee pups are so cute!

Here is a sample made by Becky of Keizer Quilts. She is much more active on Instagram and you can follow Becky here. You'll be so happy you did!




Becky made the mini quilt version of the pattern and her feedback was indispensable. I am so grateful for her help in finalizing the pattern! The Chihuahua dogs come in two block sizes and there are four different quilt layout sizes to choose from!




It's your turn for Show and Tell!!!
What have you been working on?





Sew Fresh Quilts

    • Click on at least a few of the others who have linked up.
    • In your blog post, please include a link back to my blog.
    • Grab the "Let's Bee Social!" button from above and put it on your sidebar. This way others who visit your blog that week can join in the fun!  Share the news of this new linky and Let's Bee Social!
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26 July 2016

MOD Bear Paw

Finally. 

I am finally finished my MOD Bear Paw. 

And have never been prouder of or more pleased to have a finish to share.



Here you can see my quilt holders comparing how tall the corn is growing. Notice that my husband records the height of the corn to be about nose high. And my son is holding his hand beneath his chin. Hahaha!





I stared this quilt in mid June and was so happy to have completed Step 1 in this post where I also shared the details of all the calves born this spring. The traditional Bear Paw block does seem to require that you make a few HST (Half Square Triangles) before you can move on to the more interesting aspects of making this quilt. But as the corn and calves have grown in the past few weeks, so did the quilt.

The exciting part was when I had finished all the parts and was beginning to sew them all together. Making the rows. Wow! Now that was when I knew we were closing in on the finish line. Sewing on the multiple borders. And watching this big beauty come to life.



The full size setting contains 56 full Bear Paw 7" blocks.



And there are partial blocks surrounding the Big Bear.



I am especially happy with the fabrics I chose. The entire quilt is made from only four different choices from the Shimmer collection by Northcott Fabrics. Even the backing and binding. You really have to see this fabric in person to appreciate it's true beauty. The browns all contain hints of gold metallic. The off white background, and dark grey paw prints in the border, each contain flecks of silver.



When it came time for quilting, I was dreading the thought of basting this quilt at home. And with this heat wave we've been getting?!!! In our humble home, there is just not enough table or floor space. Or air conditioning. So I headed over to my church and used the long tables there in the basement, where it was cool, to spread out the backing, batting and smooth out the top to pin. I used a new batting - Warm 100 - for the first time. It is 100% Natural Cotton - 100% Cotton Scrim from Warm Company. The one thing I noticed about this batting is that both sides are clear, clean and free of imperfections, so this would be perfect for use in quilts that contain a light coloured back and top.

Then, instead of rolling up the basted quilt to bring it back home, I returned home to retrieve my machine - Aunt Elna - and proceeded to do those wavy lines in a brown variegated thread on top and in the bobbin. It took me quite a while to decide on just what thread to use. Grey? White? Brown? White on top and brown on the bottom?




The quilting took 5 hours. I really am all about getting the quilting done. And I love to use an edge to edge organic wavy line. This seems to be my signature finish now. I am super pleased with how well the quilting looks both upon the front of the quilt.....




And on the back. 


My original plan for this quilt was inspired from an offer to submit it for an upcoming show, which you can read more about here. So I added a label and a hanging sleeve before applying the binding, which I top stitched from the front.




This quilt will be featured in my booth at the upcoming International Plowing Match in Harriston, Ontario this August 19 and 20th. If you're free, please make plans to come and drop by, if you can. I would love to meet some bloggy friends!



This "MOD Bear Paw" FULL quilt finished at 84" x 84"
and was the 5th use of my 2nd edition of 100 labels
ordered from Ikaprint.






MOD Bear Paw LAP quilt finishes at 68" x 68"


Announcing the Modernitional Bear Paw pattern release!

After having went through the entire pattern in making the full size version of this quilt.... And then having a lovely group of talented volunteers offer to test the pattern and provide me with immensely helpful feedback.....

But I must give a special thanks to Karen of Tu-Na Quilts for her efforts to go above and beyond. Her response was especially helpful and I am so grateful!  Thank you Karen!

I am now quite confident the pattern is accurate. Now this is not a pattern I would recommend to a new quilter. But I certainly would not discourage anyone from trying it either. It all depends on your confidence level and your willingness to stick to it.

So if this design appeals to you and you would like to purchase the MOD Bear Paw pattern, you can find it here in my shopThe MOD Bear Paw pattern provides instructions for four different size options from Baby at 39" x 47" to the Full size version which finishes at 84" x 84".


This won't be the last Bear Paw quilt you will see here on Sew Fresh Quilts....

I am certainly preparing to make another.... Maybe in a smaller size this time?

And am planning to offer the instructions as my next QUILT ALONG!

Coming in September!






Will you be joining us?











(FINALLY!!!!)  Linking up to Finish it up Friday with 

Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts






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25 July 2016

2016 Mid Year Review

Last December there was a fun planning party hosted by Yvonne of Quilting Jet Girl. Now Yvonne is having a mid year review linky party so we can evaluate how we've been doing with our goals. Those who want to link up are welcome to join us! Did I mention.... There are prizes!






I enjoyed participating, and wrote a blog post here, sharing my goals for the coming year. Below you will see my predictions underlined and also my evaluation of how well I have done with sticking to my plan.




Prediction: The year 2016 will be.... The YEAR OF FOCUSING ON DESIGN!

Evaluation: Well.... I think that I have spent more time in the last six months working on new designs and patterns than on anything else. I am really pleased with these new designs and have enjoyed making quilts from the new patterns.




Sometimes I have even made more than one quilt from the same pattern. My first Black Birds baby quilt was sold through my Etsy shop. And now I am so excited to have just finished piecing another version - this one with a light grey background and a blue bird instead of using red.

I am more happy with my quilting life than ever! And am looking forward to continuing on this path. Focusing on design has been the perfect goal for me. I am so satisfied to see that my readers are also happy with the ideas being produced. And it always makes my day when I get an email from someone who wants to share a photo of a quilt they have made using one of my patterns. Or when I get tagged on Instagram because someone is sharing a photo they posted.


So here's to continuing on this path.... 2016 is the year of focusing on design!!!





Prediction: The year 2016 will be.... The YEAR OF Sew Fresh Quilts ON THE ROAD!

Evaluation: So far this year, I have attended 7 events in six months. And have more bookings for teaching opportunities and quilt shows coming up. But I am MOST excited for the event to be held in August - where I will have my first ever vendor booth.

Meeting with quilters and their guilds across Ontario has been such a blessing to me! I really am a normally shy type. A homebody. Someone who is most comfortable at home and in y pajamas. Quilting in my bare feet. But these events have allowed me to come out of my shell. And speaking in front of a group has not been as nerve wracking as I had expected. When you are talking about something you are passionate about - like quilting and what it means to you - it is such a freeing experience.

Here I am flanked by Lisa of Sunlight In Winter Quilts and Kathy of Kathy's Quilts who are both members of the Royal City Quilters' Guild.

And meeting up with quilters and friends in real life is something I really enjoy. I may miss my exit... But I manage to get to where I'm going. And happy to be there!


So here's to continuing on this path.... 2016 is the year of Sew Fresh Quilts on the road!!!




Prediction: The year 2016 will be.... The YEAR OF THE QUILT ALONG!

Evaluation: Things started out well. I hosted the Ugly Christmas Sweaters quilt along, which ran from February 1st to May 31st. Now there were not as many participants as my first two quilt alongs. Ugly Sweaters just can't compete with Cute Dogs. Truthfully, I think I was a little disappointed. But I really enjoyed the quilt along and the best part was seeing the work of those who quilted along. I must say, meeting Laurel of Quilts by Laurel was the highlight. And I am so glad we met!

I have given this a lot of thought. What could I offer as my next quilt along?



And I am going to host the MOD Bear Paw QAL next. Beginning in September. So mark your calendar if you are interested in quilting along! 


So here's to continuing on this path.... 2016 is the year of the year of the quilt along!!!











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20 July 2016

Let's Bee Social #134

Welcome to the Let's Bee Social!

Before I go any further....
I just want to say THANK YOU!!! to all who volunteered to help test the Modernitional Bear Paw pattern. Most of those volunteers have responded with news of having chosen fabric and are hard at work making a quilt to test the pattern. A few of them have also responded with the news that they have read over the pattern and have double checked the material list and cutting charts. I sure do appreciate everyone who has offered to help because it is becoming increasingly obvious that I am a little overwhelmed.

I have finished my quilt top. And completed the 84" x 84" version of the quilt.



Yesterday I managed to get this beast basted and quilted. Hoping for a Friday Finish!



As I had announced last week, I am anticipating my first ever vendor event at the upcoming International Plowing Match to be held in late August. And in anticipation of this event, I ordered some new business cards.





HELP! Call for pattern testers...

Because the end of August will be here before you know it, I want to have some of my other untested patterns ready for sale at this event . And I am looking for additional pattern testers to help with some other new patterns I have been working on but have not had the time to make. The following is a list of what I would expect to receive feedback on.

Is the information accurate and easy to understand? Do you have any suggestions on how to make the information easier to understand? How could the instructions be improved?

  • Material List
  • Cutting Chart
  • Piecing Instruction
  • Quilt Assembly


The following is a list of the available designs that need to be tested.

Ay Chihuahua, Funny Bunny, Kissy Fishy and Panda.






If you are able to put any of these  the Panda pattern at the top of your quilting list and are interested, please contact me by email and put the name of the pattern you would like to test in the subject line.








It's your turn for Show and Tell!!!
What have you been working on?





Sew Fresh Quilts

    • Click on at least a few of the others who have linked up.
    • In your blog post, please include a link back to my blog.
    • Grab the "Let's Bee Social!" button from above and put it on your sidebar. This way others who visit your blog that week can join in the fun!  Share the news of this new linky and Let's Bee Social!
    • Following Sew Fresh Quilts is not required. But it sure would BEE nice!














Keep On Quilting On!










To follow Sew Fresh Quilts by email....

Enter your email address:


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