Two Tip Tuesday – Old Maid’s Puzzle Reveal

Sewing time is sparse around here…many things to organize, finalize and visualize for Houston quilt Market and Festival the end of next month. Soooo, my Old Maid’s Puzzle Remix got done on paper. I showed the hexie block I made last week, or was it the week before. I continued my original idea of turning the block on point and then repeating it. But this time I colored it more like the hexie block. I am very pleased with the result. It just never got cut and sewn. I plan on this being a new pattern in the Spring. I think the colors say “yay Spring”. I worked on keeping it in the “old” 1930s color palette. I repeat, I’m pleased!

Short and sweet this week with tips. But first a look at my process for the Old Maid’s Puzzle in photos….

#1 – Don’t be afraid to change direction mid stream. (I will still continue to work on this.)

#2 – When you get excited about and idea/quilt….make it! It will be very satisfying!

And a question still remains – Do I make this in hexie shapes or traditional half square triangle blocks??? Please leave me a comment if you have a thought!

Classes at Houston are filling up! Be sure to register and choose your favorites, sooner rather than later.

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Colorado & Remix & Another Kawandi

I knew it was going to be a great few days in Colorado when I arrived to a DOUBLE Rainbow!! Thank you to Quaking Aspen Quilt Guild for a wonderful time! I shared my Egyptian Tentmakers’ Applique lecture with stories and the Tentmakers’ beautiful work. A member of the guild, Kay, even shared one of her pieces during show and tell. My hostess, Debbie and I had a wonderful time sharing quilty bits and blue sky mornings with hot air balloons! Add coffee and homemade crusty bread, perfect!! And to Pam their program chair, thank you for making it all come together. Plus time spent over dinner with quilting friends are the best! Debbie, Pam, Karen and Dana, you girls know how to enjoy a wonderful evening.

The Quilt Pattern designers are onto another Remix as I mentioned last week. The Old Maid’s Puzzle quilt block is the focus this month. I turned the block on point and immediately saw another option using hexies! My Hex-a-ma-jig Jr. tool was used to make the block below. I’m adding the original block turned on point to show where my brain went with this idea.

I’m not sure if I will stay with hexies (actually full hexies, diamonds and triangles) or if I will go back to the original squares, and half square triangles. Hmmmm, the final reveal will be Sept. 26th. I can’t wait to see what I decide. HA!

I had some time to work on my second Kawandi. I stayed with a small 6″ square as the size. This time I used fabrics from one fabric line, Edyta Sitar’s Something Blue fabrics. It makes for a lovely combination, much different from my first scrappy version. I like them both! The photo below shows my audition of how I will add the pieces.

A mix of tips…

#1 – Turn some quilt blocks on point, you get a different view and just might see a whole different idea!

#2 – When working on a Kawandi quilt, find a needle that is easy to thread. I struggled with threading a smaller needle, I am using Perle Cotton. A larger eye needle is so much easier to thread!

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday on Wednesday – Hand Stitching

What happens when you get an extra weekend day? For me, I forgot yesterday was Tuesday as it felt like a Monday!! So, this week’s tips are coming to you a day late.

One thing that happened on Monday….I am joining another Quilt Designer Block Remix. This month we will explore the Old Maid’s Puzzle block. I have pictured it below along with my fabric pull. I’m using some of my 30’s Reproduction fabrics…get it…”old” Maid’s Puzzle. It works for me! Not sure where this one will go as a remix. We post over on Instagram each Monday of the month.

I have started a couple new projects…imagine that! I am in love with learning about Kawandi quilts, their original makers and the techniques. I spent some time online searching through Margaret Fabrizio’s website and youtube videos about her insight about Kawandi quilts. She even made a couple trips to India to study and learn from the Siddi women who make Kawandi quilts!! I’ve made a coaster and now working on one a bit bigger for a small table runner.

Did I tell you how much I love these? A friend of a friend showed me the Kawandi she was working on out in Salt Lake City at the Quilts Inc. Summer Festival. That started my search and I’m hooked!

A couple tips I have discovered when working on my first Kawandi…

#1 – Perfection does not play here! All stitches are done by hand. I have let go of making them exactly the same size. I like to get them close to the same, but I am not worried if they are not.

#2- Take it as it comes (pieces are added from the outside to the middle). You will not see the final look until you get the middle and add your final fabric. It is a huge surprise at the end.

AND….Quilts Inc. has opened class registration for International Fall Quilt Festival. I’ll be teaching 4 classes, 1 lecture and also teaching for the Friday Sampler! I hope to see you in class this fall and in my booth!

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Shoo Fly Reveal

Happy to have my Shoo fly Remix well under way. The Reveal was yesterday! I’m sewing the rows together, so here is a quick look at my top left corner! I’m happy with how easy this is to sew together. Everything is pre-cut and sure helps things go together faster.

In cutting and sewing my half hexies with Hex-a-ma-jig Jr. there are a few things I do without even thinking about it. For starters, if I am cutting down an edge with a notch. I start my cutter o the fabric next to the tool, roll the cutter back to the edge and they continue across. I am NOT cutting backwards down the whole edge. This is just a slight roll of the cutter and helps to keep you from cutting into the edge of your acrylic tools. If I am along the edge of a regular rotary cutting ruler, I tap the edge to make sure I am not on top of the ruler. I don’t want to take a chunk out of the edge of my rulers and tools. Shown below for where I start and then the forward cut cross this edge.

#1 – Description above! start – pull back – finish. Plus fingers clear!

To cut the notched “points” off, I actually place the rotary cutter blade on the fabric, put pressure on the blade and roll the cutter handle instead of trying to push the blade forward. Again, this helps to keep you from taking a chunk out of the acrylic tool and uses less movement and force of your cutter. Shown below as my starting point and how little I have to roll the handle.

#2 – Note the above description and placement and “roll” of my cutter handle below.

I hope these cutting tips helps to keep form cutting into your rulers and tools and saves fingers and time!

A shout out to Sew Batik for their beautiful dots! This is an older fabric and I don’t believe it is available anymore….but check out their others!

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Thank you Grand Rapids and Shoo Fly Remix

A GREAT big thank you to all of you who attended AQS Quilt Week in Grand Rapids and spent some time in class with me or in my booth. I was “wicked” busy but had a lot of fun! Here was my booth.

And a couple of my student’s work (as promised to them) from my Hexie Flower Garden class… I’ll post more when they send me them <grin> and <wink>!!

I also posted over on Instagram #debbiewendtquilting the 2nd Sneak Peek for the Shoo Fly Remix. I’m using my Hex-a-ma-jig Jr. template with this remix. The Reveal is next Monday. I’m looking forward to doing some power sewing for a few days.

My tips this week are a nod to my students in Grand Rapids…

#1 – First and foremost thank you for taking my classes! A comment I heard a number of times…”it was great to learn so many tips from you.” I appreciate the feedback and always happy to share tips in making quilting easier.

#2- Always check your supply lists. If you don’t understand reach out to your teacher. There was a typo (a couple words got rearranged) and I appreciate it being brought to my attention.

BONUS…thanks to my niece, Mia….put a wet paper towel next to the cutting board when cutting onions. It keeps your eyes from burning. Whatever chemical reaction happens when you cut onions looks for a water source, that is usually your eyes. But with the wet paper towel… it goes there instead. IT WORKS!!!

in quilting (and cooking!)

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Shoo Fly Remix and Hello Grand Rapids

I decided on my background for the Shoo Fly Remix dots I chose last week. I’m in love with this blue-y aqua-y batik. It works perfectly with the dots that run throughout all the dot fabrics! A shout out to Ginny at Appletree Fabrics in Auburn, MA for suggestions. A great shop with so any possibilities! My first Sneak Peak is of the “corner triangles of the Shoo Fly. Um, not the traditional half-square triangles. How about a REMIX with 60 degree triangles!

I’m in Grand Rapids ready for AQS Quilt Week! The booth is set- up and ready for quilters and I’m psyched about my classes! My hubby will be helping in the booth for the show. Be patient when waiting to make purchases! (tip #1 – be patient in ALL booths, we go as fast as we can! Sometimes our devices don’t talk nicely to eachother). Also be kind (tip #2 – most vendors have traveled a very long way to attend shows.) We love doing it, so please give us some love 🙂 Hope to see you at the show!

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – another Remix

August has brought another Designer Block Remix. We will be exploring the Shoo Fly Block. I will put it below. I have use this simple block several times. My Shoo Fly Picnic Quilt is a great, easy, fun quilt to make. This pattern even has a drop cloth bag to carry the quilt to a picnic! You can find my Shoo Fly Picnic quilt pattern HERE.

I’m looking forward to playing with this block and remixing it! Yesterday was the fabric pull. I choose some Sew Batik dots I’ve been saving for the perfect project….I think I found it. <grin>

Now to decide what background fabric to use with these wonderful dots. The progress will continue each Monday. Aug. 8th was the fabric pull, Aug. 15th is Sneak Peek 1, Aug. 22nd is Sneak Peek 2, Aug. 29th is the reveal.

Choosing a background fabric…should it be dark or light? Well, most of the time it is a personal preference. Sometimes, one is better than the other. I will probably head in the light direction for this project. A couple things to evaluate…and good tips…

1- Will the focus fabrics stand on their own on a dark background? What about a light background?

2 – What about a completely different color? There was a saying a number of years ago. Lime was the new neutral. Hmmmm, maybe I’ll choose a bold color.

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Challenge

First, I need to apologize to Deana Steel for misspelling her name in my last post. I added an extra “n”. Sorry about that Deana!

Last month for the Thimble Pleasures quilt guild the yearly challenge was due. The theme was Black and White with one color. I had a project I’ve had hanging around for MANY years. I decided it needed to be done and it fit the theme perfectly! I started this in a class I took in NH. Those of you in New England know this show has not happened for MANY years! Here is my little piece. It measures 19″ x 21 1/2″

As I got further into finishing this, the lines from “The Night Before Christmas” kept being repeated in my head. “The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow, gave luster of midday to objects below.” I love snow and the beauty of the moon on a snowy night! I’m calling my piece “Winter Trees on a Moonlit Night”. A bit about one of the fun fabrics that I used….can you see the Zebra’s eyes?

I used one of my favorite binding techniques, “Faux Piped Binding“. Some call it a flange binding. I like “faux piped” since it looks like it has piping but doesn’t. Both fabrics are a part of the binding. It is added to the back and turned to the front. All by machine, stitching in the ditch between the faux piping seam and the binding.

This is the binding I added to my Twirl-A-Tool pattern. That binding was extra wide to give the edge some substance. The key is cutting the “faux piping” fabric 1/2″ wider than the binding fabric. My Twirl-A-Tool binding fabric was cut 2″ wide and the faux piping fabric at 2 1/2″ wide. This gave the wide 4″ double fold binding. I love how it worked on the edge of Twirl-A-Tool! The pop of color on the edge is part of the binding!! Now, the Winter trees binding was cut 1 1/4″ wide and the faux piping was cut at 1 3/4″ wide. When you sew the two of them together the total binding width will be 2 1/2″ for a double fold binding. I usually make a 2 1/4″ binding but the extra width will allow for a slightly wider binding edge. Plus with all my bindings, I get the perfect finish with Brilliant Bindings tool and instructions.

Twirl-A-Tool

#1- Challenges are a great way to get UFOs finished! I believe the “Winter Trees on a Moonlit Night” was 10 years in the making yikes! But, now it is DONE!

#2 – Play with your binding! I love how a “faux piped binding” can add a highlight of color to the edge of a quilt without a lot of work or adding a narrow border that can be tricky to keep even.

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – SLC wrap up

A great big thank you to those taking my classes in Salt Lake City! Great things happen in a classroom to learn trusted techniques, tools and new concepts. The trusted techniques included my “Done by Three” class with cutting fat quarters the same to make a quick quilt. More trusted techniques (sewing on bindings) and a tool (Brilliant Bindings) and new concepts (binding curved edges) in “Become a Brilliant Binder” and last but not least “Piecing is the Cornerstone” for trusted techniques of simple units that make up most quilt designs! I only took a few photos during class, so below is the start of Lynn’s and Bonnie’s Done by Three blocks. They both did a great job! Plus a huge well done to all my students. We had some laughs and great progress in bindings and blocks!

I was able to spend an entire day walking the show! Rarely do I get the chance to do this since I usually have a booth. My friend Deanna Steel’s Mason Jar Bouquet was in the Exhibit – A Celebration of Color. She does amazing applique and quilting. I missed seeing her at the show since I was teaching, but I was able to get a picture of her quilt! BEAUTIFUL work Deanna!!

Some of my favorite quilts were in the antique exhibits of Christmas in July of Red and Green quilt and Out of the Blue with Blue and White quilts. Below is a quilt from the Christmas in July- Cherry Wreath. I love the addition of a spot of yellow in several of the beautiful applique flowers.

Plus here are two from the Blue and White collection. All of these quilts are antiques and the maker is unknown, so unfortunately we only see credit of the design and possible dates. They are from the IQF Corporate Collection. The quilt on the left is Fleur-de-Lis with beautiful feathers and on the right is Early Indigo Trapunto….and take a look at the amazing trapunto work!

I attended the 1876 Centennial Quilt Project Gallery Walk/Talk with Anne Dawson. Amazing story of an antique found in Connecticut and Anne’s journey of creating a quilts and a pattern from this quilt. The pattern can be found HERE. I did not take any photos, so please go to her gallery to see her amazing quilt and those of her students!

I was in SLC for an extra day after the show. I got to see the incredible Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra! They broadcast a live performance every Sunday morning. “Music & The Spoken Word”. It was an amazing experience of beauty of vocals and instruments! Visitors are welcome to attend! My sister is a vocal music major from the Music Conservatory at UMKC and knowing the training and dedication of using her voice, I am in awe of musical talent.

My dear friends Don and LuAnn from Winline Batting are local to SLC. I got to spend an afternoon exploring the mountains around SLC and learning the business side of my favorite Bamboo Batting!

Tips from SLC…

#1 – Explore ALL the vendors at a show. They have wonderful stories and great products.

#2- Explore the surrounding area/city/town of where the quilt shows are held.

#3- As I have commented before, take a class. A great way to learn trusted techniques and meet new quilting friends and connect with “old” quilting friends!

in quilting,

Debbie

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Two Tip Tuesday – Salt Lake City!

I’m on my way….to Salt Lake City, this time! I’m looking forward to teaching and walking the show. Feels a bit like playing since I won’t have a booth this time. The photo below is one of my new samples for “Piecing is the Cornerstone” class. It is all about simple piecing techniques/block units that are popular across the board for most quilts. I’ll share the big picture after class. The students will get the first look! The second picture is another option using the same basic quilt units. The center is shown on the Quilts Inc. website for the class description.

In getting another project finished last week, I had to piece together some batting. It was actually a small piece (Challenge for one of the guilds I belong to) so I used scraps…Bamboo Batting by Winline, my favorite! When piecing together batting is is best to slightly overlap two edges and cut a gentle curve/wave. Then remove the extra bits from the edges and you have a nice gentle line to stitch together with a wide zigzag stitch on your sewing machine. I was so excited I found two pieces that worked, I cut and pitched the extra bits before I took a picture. So, the photos below is the next steps – stitching of the join and after it was stitched. This is great so you don’t have a hard line across the piece. It disappears really well!

#1 – When piecing batting, cut a curve overlapping two edges. This also allow the curve to match up!

#2- Stitch a large zigzag on the sewing machine to piece/connect the two cut batting pieces. Plus no hard edges.

Bonus….go to a Quilt Show this summer….. you can avoid the summer heat!

I hope to see you in class in Salt Lake City at the summer Quilts Festival. Or maybe on the show floor!

in quilting,

Debbie

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