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Shot Cotton Week: Day 3

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Sometimes I have an idea in my head and I set off sewing, hoping my head will tell my hands what to do. The featured quilt today was a fun way with the traditional Rail Fence block. I wanted the colors to "float" around in the white/cream and have a sense of a modern quilt. Here is a quilt I made 10 years ago with the same concept, but using a black and white print. I never did get a border on this. I sent it to a friend to machine quilt and she donated it to a local charity. But you can see how those bright colors "weave" in and out of the black print. Crayon Logs: 2010 I used those Artisan Cotton fabrics to recreate this, but this time with a white background. The logs are 2-1/2" x 6-1/2" strips (3 logs in each block). Then they are turned 90 degrees to each other. It almost looks like a weaving. I was happy with the center of the quilt, but I got stuck with the borders. I started pulling fabrics from my stash, for some reason thinking I should use some

Shot Cotton Week: Day 2

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 This is my South Carolina Star block. It's designed to be sewn as a foundation pieced pattern. South Carolina Star Here is a little more info on what shot cottons really are: Artisan Cotton  by Another Point of View is a beautiful cross-dyed quilter's weight cotton that acts as a solid but with a zing! The rich, saturated colors truly pop and are simply spectacular. These solids are a mixture of pretty pastels, zesty brights and rich neutral tones. These fabrics also have a good feel (hand) and are just as "weighty" as good quality quilter's cotton. That's what I like! Look at those yellow/gold threads that are woven with blues to get this green. The fabric is NOT a flat color. Yellow/Green shot cotton by  Windham OK, you say. Yawn. Let's see some things you've MADE! I've shared this before. It's my Winding Ways quilt. This is NOT for the new quilter or one who is a bit shy of curved seams. Winding Ways block using Windham shots and Kaffe Fass

Shot Cotton Week: Day 1

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No, not from the barrel from a gun! These are cotton fabrics that are truly woven with two different threads - one color is "shot" in and out of a second one. Check it out with this bundle of Artisan Cottons (still around in quilt shops). What's with the red threads coming out of that purple fat quarter on the right? Well, that piece of fabric gets its color from those red threads woven in and out of another color. Amazing, right? Artisan Cottons by Windham Fabrics Here's one of the fabulous creations I made using these colors. This is my 10" Palm block which is paper pieced. (I've taken the papers off and you can see how it's pieced like an off center log cabin.) It's one of the classes I'm teaching this week in Raleigh for the Sewing Expo. And here's the quilt I made using 8 of these blocks. I set them on point and used a multi-print to spice it up a bit. My students will be stitching these 10" blocks but I can't offer this size vi

Blog Housekeeping and a Sneak Peek

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As you know, Blogger will be stopping the auto notification for my blog followers sometime soon. I looked around for a suitable replacement and settled on Follow.it. It is NOT suitable . I have had multiple "unsubscribes" in the past 2 months like never before. I don't think that's because of the quilting theme; I think it's because of the tabloid links Follow.it puts BY DEFAULT at the bottom of my posts. I have NO CONTROL over that. Therefore, I am discontinuing Follow.it. I will delete the subscription and hope for the best. I know many of you signed up for it. Trust me - I would unsubscribe from my own blog if I was seeing this every day! Now for the sneak peek. I'm having "Shot Cotton Week" all next week. Five days featuring the glorious cottons referred to as "shot cottons" as seen in the photo above. I share quilts and projects each week. Hope you'll come back and see them. Maybe make a note on your computer to visit my blog once

FREE Pattern Saturday

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It's still July and here is one more pattern for Christmas in July. When there's snow, there's Frosty! If where you live is like where I live, it's sweaty hot outside and I can only dream of snow. I've shared this before and it's worth sharing again because this fun pattern works with just about ANY set of fabrics. This is a delightful 1930s print that is Winter themed (ok, I know you see gingerbread houses and Christmas stockings and candy canes - what can I say?) This is  Frosted Blocks  and it's FREE! Frosted Blocks : 56" x 65" This uses my tried and true pattern which I call Tilt. I first made this style of quilt in 2002 when I looked at the Tri-Recs ruler and figured I could "tilt" some charm squares. I called it "The Talking Quilt" because the squares are novelty prints that would get the interest of a child and get them to "talk" about each one. Don't use this for nap time - they won't go to sleep! The T

Diamonds and Blooms and a Giveaway!

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Paper piecing: you either love it or hate it. I have found that my students don't have a middle ground! It certainly can be confusing, having to work with a piece of paper between you and the fabric. But, if you want really sharp points without hand piecing, then sometimes this is the only alternative. CONTEST IS OVER: #5 was my first pick, but she is "unknown." I'm so sorry I had no email to contact you. Then Random Number Generator selected #7, Sherry. Here is my very first Diamonds and Blooms quilt, made in 2008. As you may remember from previous posts, I sew first and pattern later. I do NOT design in EQ and then try to flesh it out in fabric. I like to say: "I do what the fabric tells me to do!" Diamonds and Blooms : 34" x 34" It wasn't the paper piecing units that gave me grief. It was the patterning of those center diamonds! I went on to make 2 more quilts using my workshop samples (minus those diamonds!) I decided to retire this class

Anatomy of a Quilt

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This was first published in 2000 (21+ years ago)! And it still applies to quilts today. I called it The Anatomy of a Quilt, because - well - we talk about the body parts of a quilt! I included this in my first book and was subsequently published a few more times in Quilt Magazine. Enjoy!   Here are some words to go along with what you see in the image above: Anatomy of A Quilt© by Debby Kratovil   A lot more than quilt blocks make up a quilt. All quilts are composed of many different elements which are all vital. Not all quilts contain the same elements but have a mix and match of the items we illustrate here. Most quilts have a common set of ingredients necessary to call it a quilt. We will begin with those.   Appliqué Block - A background piece of fabric with designs of smaller pieces of fabric stitched onto it, either by hand or machine sewing. These create a design which many times is curved (flowers, leaves, landscape). Alternate Block - Either pieced, appliquéd, or plain fabric.

Stained Glass Pickup Sticks

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 I designed this technique about 20 years ago. It's part of my Magic Stax bundle of patterns. What I forgot was that I made SO MANY quilts (well, actually 5). Here's my original quilt which was made with a stack of 10-1/2" squares of batiks. I call it  Stained Glass Pickup Stix . It appeared in a quilting magazine around 2007. And also in my 2014 Wall Calendar of Quilts. Stained Glass Pickup Stix : 54" x 64" Here's my most recent one using some batiks from Michael Miller. I had just enough of the black print insert fabric - whew! Pickup Stix using Tropical Batiks by Michael Miller Stacks of squares are cut - not randomly, but with a plan. Make 2 cuts in a stack of 4 fabrics and then shuffle them. Each block is made from those 4 patches. Stacks of squares cut and shuffled Then the thin "stained glass" strips are added and then trimmed. I made one with some lovely prints in blues and greens. A friend of mine quilted it and it was sold at my local quil

Christmas in July with Beary Soft

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Another day, another amazing piece of soft and cuddly fabric from Michael Miller. This is  Beary Soft  and I have to say that I was a bit afraid to imagine sewing with it! After all, I've been exclusively working with 100% quilter's cottons for 29 years. How do I handle lots of fluffy stuff? Minky Beary Soft These 3 pieces (Red, Turquoise and Kelly Green) had plans for me! They wanted to play with the little Gnomes from the other day that I shared here. I discovered that cutting into Beary Soft was even more challenging than the Minky. But I was ready! I got out my vacuum cleaner attachment! Lots of fluff! Using my ruler to keep the fabric from being sucked into the attachment Edges are clean and no fuzz all over my sewing room. I made two pillows with book pockets. Here is the first (since given to my 5 year old grandson Javier on his birthday a few weeks ago). The single layer pocket is of the Minky and I used some  Gingham Play  to bind the raw edges at the top. I made this

To Grandma's House We Go

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Yes, I'm a grandma, but I wasn't when this quilt was made. I was using a 2007 collection by Benartex and decided to capture the playful feel of the fabrics and to cut out the words and add them to the top of the quilt. This was in my Galaxy of Stars magazine issue.  To Grandma's House We Go I was making a trip to California (from Atlanta, where I lived at the time) to visit family and my flight was delayed due to tornado activity in Colorado. I spent the night in the airport, but I had this quilt in my overnight bag (I was taking it to my sister who WAS a grandmother at the time) and I pulled it out and it was my pillow! Smart, huh? One other quilt that was in that magazine issue was made using Springs Fabrics. This is a variation on a Double Irish Chain. I called it Chain of Squares (but my editor renamed it!) Asian Mosaic (Double Irish Chain): 64" x 64" Here is the single block as I have it in my Quilter's Block a Day Calendar: And one more. I made this usin