Modern Clutch is Ready to Step Out!

New Clutch Bag ready to go!

New Clutch Bag ready to go!

Now that the weather is turning cooler, we will be spending more time indoors.  That also gives the opportunity to dress up a bit for a special evening.  I have been making clutch purses from a pattern called Modern Clutch by Pink Sand Beach Designs.  Here’s an example of one of them.

Love the roomy interior!

Love the roomy interior!

This purse has a black silk dupioni exterior with a cotton lining. I also added a J Monogram to personalize it. It’s so easy to transform the look of the bag by your fabric choice and/or adding a bit of embroidery.

What really impresses me about this bag is the roomy interior.

They have been so much fun to make and  I will be offering a class at the Quilt Crossing called the Modern Clutch Bag.  If you are interested, just click on the link to register and you too can make your very own personalized clutch purse.

I hope you can join us!  It will be a fun class.

I trust you are enjoying this amazing Fall weather.

Happy Stitching,

Jane

 

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Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button?

 

My button collection in my mother's old cookie jar

My button collection in my Mom’s old cookie jar

When I was a little girl, I loved to visit my Grandma Magdalena’s house.  I was always fascinated by her latest sewing projects.  She instilled a love of sewing in me and one of my favorite things to look through were her buttons.

Now I have my own button collection and am fortunate that it includes a few of my grandmother’s buttons that were in her treadle sewing machine that I have.  They, of course, are my most treasured buttons and have their own special keeping place and  once in a while, are used on a very special project.  However, I also have collected additional buttons over the years and they are stored in my mother’s old cookie jar.

The buttons Eloise chose for her bolero

The buttons Eloise chose for her bolero

The interesting thing is, guess what our granddaughters love to play with… yes, you guessed, my button collection.  They are fascinated with my buttons and will painstakingly look through them to determine if there is a mate to a button they like.

This summer I have enjoyed watching them every Monday and we usually have a few projects/activities when we are together.  It has been a very fun summer and it’s hard to believe school starts this next week.

One Monday last month, Eloise and I had an entire day together because Belen was at a Writer’s Camp.  Eloise asked if she could play with my button jar and was keen to find several favorites.  I told her I would make her a button bracelet, but she found too many buttons for a bracelet, so we decided to make her a bolero instead.

Sewing the facing to the inside of the bolero

Sewing the facing to the inside of the bolero

I had some old jeans that I had in the bag for “good will” and I cut the legs apart and was able to selvage enough denim to use for her bolero.

In a collection of patterns that I use for the girls, I found a cute little bolero pattern that was just what I had in mind.

Eloise was very interested in what I was doing and patiently watched the project progress.

The monogram we put on the back of the bolero

The monogram we put on the back of the bolero

 

I thought it would be fun to add a monogram to the back of the bolero and let Eloise choose a thread color.  She decided to use a variegated thread which provided an interesting look as you can see from the photo.

 

 

Bolero with Eloise's favorite buttons

Bolero with Eloise’s favorite buttons

 

When the bolero was finished, we sat and visited while I sewed on Eloise’s “favorite” buttons.  She was so excited to try it on and wanted to make sure that I put a “Nana” label on it.

 

 

Eloise trying on her bolero for the first time...

Eloise trying on her bolero for the first time…

Finally, Eloise was able to put on her “Beautiful Button Bolero”.  She was so proud of it; it was fun to watch.

Later that evening we were invited to Andy’s for dinner and she was very anxious to show both Andy and Belen what we made that day.  It was so rewarding seeing her delight with her new bolero!

 

Eloise modeling her new bolero for Daddy and Belen

Eloise modeling her new bolero for Daddy and Belen

Belen was pleased for Eloise and asked me if we could make her a button bracelet so the next week when the girls came, we did just that.

Belen modeling her new button bracelet.

Belen modeling her new button bracelet.

She chose 4 buttons and we added her initial as well for her button bracelet.  Belen was delighted with the finished new piece of button jewelry.  I was most delighted with her smile!

I hope you are making some fun projects over the summer and getting to spend time with your favorite people as well.

Happy Sewing,

Jane

B's button bracelet

B’s button bracelet

 

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Little Reader’s Quilt

 

Little Reader's Quilt

Little Reader’s Quilt

Earlier this year, I shared my love of quilting with our granddaughter, Belen’s first grade class.  When the class came to see the machine quilting process at the Quilt Crossing, they also chose a strip of fabric that would represent their book in the bookcase quilt I was making for the class project.

As I mentioned, the quilt is a book case quilt that has four rows of books.  I found the pattern at the Moda Bake Shop website.  On the quilt, you see the spines of the books on the shelves and the children were asked to give me a name of a book that they liked to read or one that they would like to write, along with their name.

Belen holding the first batch of embroidered book spines

Belen holding the first batch of embroidered book spines

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Belen and Eloise were excited to help Nana.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I made a grid of the quilt layout so that I could evenly space the books with titles/names.  Then I embroidered the children’s names and the name of their book on the fabric strip they chose for their book.

In addition, I laid out the strips on my design wall to insure that the colors were arranged in a pleasing manner.

I labeled each of the strips so I knew where they belonged as I was sewing them.

I labeled each of the strips so I knew where they belonged as I was sewing them.

Building the quilt on my design wall

Building the quilt on my design wall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was exciting to see the quilt come together as each of the blocks were completed one by one.  The labels were helpful to insure that I placed the correct book spine strips in the appropriate blocks and row.

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Stitching out the letters one at a time

Trimming out the letters

Trimming out the letters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Each letter was machine appliquéd individually.  The letters were trimmed once they were appliquéd.

Label for the quilt (class name whited out for privacy)

Label for the quilt (class name whited out for privacy)

 

 

 

The finishing touch was the label on the back of the quilt.

 

 

 

I hired Colleen Murphy to quilt the quilt and she did a fabulous job.  Once I finished binding it, it was ready to be delivered to the school for the Spring Fundraiser event.

The night of auction - time for the quilt's bidding!

The night of auction – time for the quilt’s bidding!

 

It was exciting when the quilt came up for bid.  There was a lot of bidding  activity and I must admit, I was nervous for our daughter, Alecia, as she really wanted to get this quilt.

 

 

 

The quilt hanging at the Fund Raiser

The quilt hanging at the Fund Raiser

I’m pleased to report that the quilt was a fund raising success and even more excited to share that Alecia got the winning bid and is now the proud owner of the quilt.

It was a fun quilt to make and a great pattern to personalize.

If you make it, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Here’s one final picture of the completed quilt.

The finished quilt

The finished quilt

What projects have you been working on recently.  I would love to hear about them.

Happy stitching!

Jane

 

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Piping Made Easier for a Fun and Colorful Finish

Piping is a great way to add a bit more color and interest to a finished product.  In a quilt, it can also be used to accent borders and bindings, etc.  In the past, however, it was a challenge to make piping with a good, consistent true seam allowance.  Thanks to Susan Cleveland and her Piping Hot Binding booklet and Groovin’ Piping Trimming Tool, that has changed.

The Piping Hot Binding Booklet from Susan Cleveland

The Piping Hot Binding Booklet from Susan Cleveland

Screen shot of Susan's You Tube Video

Screen shot of Susan’s You Tube Video

 

 

 

 

 

 

In her booklet,  Susan takes you step by step through the process of making your own bias binding. She has also made a You Tube video that describes the process in detail.

Use Susan's Groovin' Piping Trimming Tool to trim 1/4" or 1/2" seam allowance consistently

Use Susan’s Groovin’ Piping Trimming Tool to trim 1/4″ or 1/2″ seam allowance consistently

 

Susan’s method is very straight forward and her Groovin’ Piping Trimming Tool greatly simplifies the process of making your own custom piping by providing a means to easily create a consistent 1/4″ or 1/2″ seam allowance.

 

Using a stack of post-it notes for a seam guide is a simple, but very helpful aid

Using a stack of post-it notes for a seam guide is a simple, but very helpful aid

 

 

In addition, Susan provides several helpful tips and tricks to make it easier to manage your bias strips when you are covering the cording for your piping.

She provides multiple options for making piping with the different types of sewing machines and presser feet.  There are lots of ideas included for applying binding, mitering corners, adding optional sleeves and different variations for piping including double piping, prairie points, pieced piping, etc.

A consistent seam allowance on piping makes a big difference

A consistent seam allowance on piping adds a professional finish to my Home Is Where the Heart Is Table Runner (new pattern).

 

In no time at all, you will be able to successfully incorporate piping as an accent in your future sewing projects and I’m convinced you will be thrilled with the results!

To learn more about Susan’s piping tools, please visit her website or check for her tools at your local quilt store.  She has a number of other useful tools that I’m sure you find of interest as well.

Please feel free to share your finished project(s) as it is always exciting to learn something new and share with others.

Happy Stitching!

Jane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s always exciting when you learn how to simplify a process.

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Versatile Wave Interchangeable Purse

As you know, I am a pattern designer and really enjoy coming up with unique ideas that I transform into a pattern.  However, every once in a while, I come across a pattern that is so unique and well done that I just simply cannot resist to buy and make it.  The Versatile Wave Interchangeable Purse pattern by Ruthann Stilwell is one such pattern.

Front cover of the pattern

Front cover of the pattern

I admired a purse that one of my customers made from this pattern.  She had taken a class to learn how to make it and just loved the bag.  I could see a dozen applications for the bag and ordered a copy of the pattern through the Quilt Crossing.

I was very anxious to make my first bag.  It is constructed with a solid black fabric for the basic purse.  For the reversible cover, I chose a more contemporary red batik for one side and for the second side, I used a fabric from Moda from their Modern Background Essentials by Brigitte Heitland for ZEN CHIC.  I love how you achieve two different looks simply by reversing the purse cover!

In addition, the bag is very practical with two large inside pockets in the base purse as well as additional outside pockets provided by the outside cover.  There are also instructions for a “checkbook clutch” included in the pattern.

Purse with red batik fabric cover

Purse with red batik fabric cover

Purse cover showing the Moda fabric - Modern Background Essentials

Purse cover showing the Moda fabric – Modern Background Essentials

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Think of the possibilities!  With one basic purse and multiple, interchangeable purse covers, you can have a limitless variety of purses to use to coordinate with your wardrobe.  In addition, you can embellish the purse covers with monograms, piping, etc. – the list is literally endless.

I am already working on two additional bags.  I’m afraid it is a bit addictive!

Love how the outside cover also provides some very handy outside pockets. My iPhone 6 Plus fits nicely!

Love how the outside cover also provides some very handy outside pockets. My iPhone 6 Plus fits nicely!

I’m also pleased to share that I will be offering a class on how to make this purse at the Quilt Crossing in their new summer newsletter.  The class is called “Reversible Purse” and is on Page 9 of the newsletter.  It is being offered as a two session class on Wednesdays, June 8 & 22 from 1-4 p.m. for a cost of $45.   When you sign up for the class, you will be given a supply list and Quilt Crossing also has the recommended hardware, which really adds the finishing touch to the bag.

I just had to share this wonderful pattern and am so excited to make more of these great purses.  I’m also eager to teach this bag in the above mentioned class and hope you can join us.

Happy Sewing!

Jane

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Come Quilt with Us at the College of Idaho Summer Program Classes

Pinwheels in Progress!!!

Pinwheels in Progress!!!

It’s hard to believe that summer is almost here.  Where does the time go?  The month of April whizzed by with so many birthdays and fun events.  Now it’s time to think about summer…

I’m particularly excited that College of Idaho has asked me to teach quilting classes again this year as part of their Community Learning – Summer 2016 program.

We will be offering the same classes that I taught last year, including:

  • Beginner Strip Quilt Class
  • Intermediate Paper Piecing Pinwheel Class
  • Advanced Log Cabin Wonder Class

We had such a good time last year and I’m really excited to once again teach in the beautiful Shannon Lounge in the Kathryn Albertson International Center.  I mentioned our facilities when I first saw them last year and they were just perfect for sewing and quilting.  Parking is very convenient as well, making it easy to navigate supplies, etc. to the classroom.

In the Beginner Strip Quilt Class last year, we had a fun group of sewists including:

Piecing the quilt top for the strip quilt

Piecing the quilt top for the strip quilt

There were a two sets of mother and daughters who had a great class taking the class together.  It was fun to see them work together on their color schemes as well as layout of their fabrics.

The pattern we use for this class is very versatile and allowed the ladies to choose between a baby or twin size finished quilt.

Using a design wall to lay out her fabrics

Using a design wall to lay out her fabrics

 

 

 

 

We had several room dividers that doubled as a perfect design wall where students could audition and lay out their fabric to develop their final quilt color scheme.

 

The students also enjoyed meeting new people

The students also enjoyed meeting new people

 

 

 

Of course, part of the fun of taking a quilting class is meeting new people who share a lot of common interests, which was certainly the case in this class.

Ladies with their finished masterpieces

Ladies with their finished masterpieces

 

 

It was difficult to say farewell to this class as we really did have a great time sewing together and their finished quilts really were lovely.

If you are interested in this year’s class, please visit the College of Idaho website for the Beginner Strip Quilt Class that is being held on June 1st and 15th this year.

With a twist and turn and your pinwheel looks totally different...

With a twist and turn and your pinwheel looks totally different…

Spinning Windmills Paper Piecing Class

The paper piecing class is designed for students who have previous quilting experience and want to learn paper piecing.

It was exciting to see these projects come together in so many unique looks from the same pattern.

Options available for table runner or wall quilt

Options available for table runner or wall quilt

 

 

 

 

It was also fun to see some familiar faces from the Beginner quilt class in the Spinning Windmills class.  Once again, a very nice group of ladies who were excited to try new ideas and techniques as they built their spinning windmills quilt blocks.

Visit the C. of I. website to learn more about the class that is being offered this year for the Spinning Windmills Paper Piecing Class on Thursdays, June 9th and 23rd from 6-9 p.m.

Class members of the Spinning Windmills Class

Class members of the Spinning Windmills Class

Log Cabin Wonder Class

One of many styles for the Log Cabin Wonder Class

One of many styles for the Log Cabin Wonder Class

The third class that is being offered this year is the Log Cabin Wonder Class.

This has been changed to a two session class that will be held on Wednesdays, July 20 and 27th from 6:00 – 9:30 p.m.

The log cabin quilt is endless in its design possibilities and I’m looking forward to see all the various color combinations and final layouts of the finished quilt tops from this class.

Please visit the College of Idaho Website for more information on the Log Cabin Wonder Class.    I hope you can come and build your own personalized version of the log cabin quilt.

Finished Log Cabin Quilt

Finished Log Cabin Quilt

If you are looking for a fun way to spend a few summer evenings and learn something new, come join us at the College of Idaho.

Our classroom is a former library and has lots of tables and space to set up your machines as well as incredible lighting due to the large windows, that also offer a nice view.

I guarantee you will not only meet some wonderful new quilting friends, but also get the opportunity to visit the beautiful campus at the College of Idaho.

I hope to see you this summer.  If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.

Happy stitching!

Jane

 

 

 

 

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Forever Young and Still Learning…

One of the things I enjoy the most about my business, is the people I am privileged to meet in the private lessons I teach.  I have taught children like Liam, who made a twin-sized B’s Big Girl Quilt, and love how curious our granddaughters are when they come to visit.

Belen (6) and Eloise (4) watching my Bernina machine embroider B's Classroom Quilt

Belen (6) and Eloise (4) watching my Bernina machine embroider B’s Classroom Quilt

I’m sure they will be sewing with me in the near future.

I’m particularly impressed when I am asked by a “more mature” customer to help them either with a project or to learn more about their new machines or the embroidery software.  Recently, I’ve had the pleasure of working with Barb and Lily.

Barb excited about her first day of lessons

Barb excited about her first day of lessons

Closer look of her design called Purple Trillium

Closer look of her design called Purple Trillium

Barb is a wonderful lady, 79 years young.  She discovered a beautiful design set by Smith Street Designs called Wildflowers.  She already had the perfect palette for these designs, a quilt she recently finished piecing.  She wanted a refresher course on embroidering with her Bernina 730 machine.

 

 

She wanted to learn how to load the designs to her machine again as well as the fundamentals of machine embroidery.  In no time at all, she was busy stitching her very first floral design on a block of her quilt with a solid background.  Isn’t it stunning?

 

 

Another design called Indian Blanket

Another design called Indian Blanket

 

When she arrived for her second  lesson, she was eager to share the additional blocks she had completed.  She also announced that she had dismantled her quilt top to make it easier to hoop the individual blocks.  I was amazed, but it does make the project a lot easier to work on.

She had a long list of questions and in no time at all, we were stitching another stunning design from the Wildflower collection called Indian Blanket.

 

 

Barb cutting around the securing stitch for her machine appliqué design

Barb cutting around the securing stitch for her machine appliqué design

Barb is so enthusiastic and fun to work with.  She is always open to learn something new and then give it a try for herself.  I really admire her tenacity and am pleased how well she is doing in the short period of time we have worked together.

She has quite a wardrobe of adorable hats and I’m  anxious to see what stylish accessory she is wearing.  I feel very fortunate to share some very fun hours with Barb as we work on her latest project(s).

When her quilt is finished, I will post a picture of it as it is going to be stunning… just like the maker!

 

Lily working with her new Bernina 580 machine

Lily working with her new Bernina 580 machine

Meet Lily, another one of my students who is working on a wonderful quilt for her great granddaughter’s graduation.

Lily is 83 and delightful!  She is also learning more about machine embroidery and doing very well.

She originally purchased a machine that could not do embroidery, but in no time at all traded that machine for an embroidery machine so that she too could create some of the beautiful embroidered projects.  She said that she bought a new machine in order to learn something new.  She feels it is important to challenge oneself in order to keep your mind active and alert.

Stitching with Lily

Stitching with Lily

I feel very privileged to get to spend time with her and always look forward to my “Lessons with Lily”.

I hope you are enjoying some beautiful spring weather and would love to hear about projects you have been working on.

In the meantime, “Happy Stitching!!!”

Jane

 

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Hugs & Kisses Cuddle Quilt

Sometimes the best way to let someone know you are thinking about them, is to make a quilt.  It not only provides comfort to the recipient of the quilt, but additionally provides a bit of therapy for the maker of the quilt.  Recently, my sister, Vicki, had two surgeries and, due to the extreme bad weather conditions, it was impossible to visit her.  The Minneapolis airport was literally shut down off and on for two days.

A warm and snuggly throw

A warm and snuggly throw

I wanted to send her something that would let her know how much she was in my thoughts and prayers.  Due to time constraints (I wanted to send it as quickly as possible) I decided to make her a cuddle quilt. I told my sisters, Mary and Kathy, what I was doing and was pleased that they wanted to be a part of the quilt as well.

Choose two colors of minkee or cuddle cloth and a light weight batting

Choose two colors of minkee or cuddle cloth and a light weight batting

I had seen some throws that were being simply made out of two layers of cuddle cloth, which were very cozy.  Since there was no piecing involved, they also did not take a lot of time to make.  This was a good solution and here’s how I made it.

To get started, decide on the size of the throw you want to make and purchase two pieces of cuddle cloth for top and bottom of the quilt.  I also added a layer of Dream Cotton Request batting, to provide additional warmth as it is very cold in Minnesota this time of year.

 

Colleen setting up the quilting machine

Colleen setting up the quilting machine

To save time, I decided to hire the wonderful ladies at Quilt Crossing’s Quilt Studio and have them quilt an adorable X and O’s (Hugs and Kisses) pantograph design across the quilt.  Colleen set up the machine and programmed the computer and in no time at all had completed the quilting across the cuddle cloth.

 

Watching the magic happen as the machine stitched across the layers of cuddle cloth

Watching the magic happen as the machine stitched across the layers of cuddle cloth

 

It was fun to watch as the machine made its way across the layers of fabric.  The X and O’s of the “hugs and kisses” quilting design really stood out as the machine meandered back and forth stitching lots of love into our throw quilt.

 

 

 

Trimming away the excess batting and minkee

Trimming away the excess batting and minkee

Using a lint roller to clean up the minkee dust

Using a lint roller to clean up the minkee dust

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once the quilting was finished , I trimmed away the excess minkee and batting from the edges of the quilted fabrics.  It is helpful to use a lint roller to clean up the minkee dust that is created whenever you cut into minkee or cuddle cloth.

Making the binding for the quilt

Making the binding for the quilt

 

I found a cute striped fabric to use for the binding of the quilt and cut a 2 1/2″ binding for the diameter of the quilt.  This was seamed together and pressed and then stitched around the edges of the quilt.

Now it was time for the finishing touch of the quilt…

 

 

Stitching the binding and a whole lot of love onto the quilt

Stitching the binding and a whole lot of love onto the quilt

 

We wanted to let Vicki know how very much we all were thinking of her.  A good way to convey our warmest wishes was through a quilt label.  I also wanted her to know that this quilt was from all of her sisters and designed a label in my Designer Plus software that expressed all our sentiments.

Creating the quilt label in my Designer Plus software

Creating the quilt label in my Designer Plus software

 

 

 

 

Stitching the label onto the quilt

Stitching the label onto the quilt

 

 

 

The completed label

The completed label

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The label reads, “For our sweet sister, Vicki…  We love you to the moon & back.  Love Always, Jane, Kathy & Mary”

The finished quilt, being folded for express shipping

The finished quilt, being folded for express shipping

The quilt was complete and ready to ship.  I was very pleased how it turned out and the above picture shows how the quilting design really shows through.  Best of all, Vicki was so excited when she got her package and called us immediately.  She said she was all snuggled up in the warmth of her cuddle quilt, reading the label from her three sisters.  Needless to say, it pleased all of us.

If you have a need for a quilt that is relatively quick to make, but provides lots of warmth and comfort, you too might consider making a cuddle quilt.

Happy Sewing!

Jane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Quilting with First Graders

A few months ago, after attending a school program for our granddaughter, Belen, her teacher asked if I would be interested in telling the children about quilting.  I thought that would be a fun opportunity and agreed to meet with her to further discuss.  Over the holiday break, we met and brainstormed ideas and decided that first, I would come in to talk with the children at school and then, the next day, we would take a field trip to a local quilt store, Quilt Crossing, to learn even more.

Showing the children an embroidered nine patch quilt

Showing the children an embroidered nine patch quilt

On Thursday of this week, I went to Belen’s class  and talked to the children about quilts and quilting.

Talking about the different types of quilts with the class

Talking about the different types of quilts with the class

I was so impressed at how attentive they were.  We talked about the difference between a quilt and a blanket and I demonstrated how a quit is made of multiple layers of the quilt top, batting, and the backing.  They were eager to share their experiences with quilts as well as the stories associated with them.  One quilt they especially enjoyed was a quilt I made in memory of my mother, Hazel Johnson (Belen’s great grandmother).  The fabric has several scenes that depict growing up on a farm.

Some of the farm scenes on the quilt

Some of the farm scenes on the quilt

One of the farm scenes on the quilt.

Close up of farm scene on the quilt.

 

 

 

 

My grandmother, Magdalena Sveen on top of a crazy quilt she made in 1953

My grandmother, Magdalena Sveen on top of a crazy quilt she made in 1953

 

 

I told them how I first became interested in sewing because of my Grandmother, Magdalena Sveen, who is Belen’s Great Great Grandmother.  She was the first person to teach me how to sew, and later, taught me how to piece and tie quilts.    The majority of her quilts were utilitarian quilts and were donated to the Lutheran church bazaars in North Dakota, where she lived.

The crazy quilt my Grandma Sveen made in 1953

The crazy quilt my Grandma Sveen made in 1953

 

However, I shared a very special quilt that my grandmother gave me many years ago.  It is a wool crazy quilt she made in 1953 and is a very special keepsake of mine. ( I can only imagine the hours she spent embellishing each patch of the quilt with beautiful and varied embroidery stitches.)

I shared with the children the differences between a pieced quilt versus an appliquéd quilt and the children were asking very good questions.

It really was exciting to see their enthusiasm as we discussed a quilt project that we are going to make together as a class.  They were anxious to choose the fabrics they wanted to represent them in the class quilt.

The children watching a demo of a computerized quilting machine

The children watching a demo of a computerized quilting machine

On Friday, the children arrived at Quilt Crossing.  They were very excited to see all the beautiful quilts hanging in the store.  The first demonstration for them  was a computerized long-arm quilting machine.  They were mesmerized and watched the needle position of the quilt pattern on the computer tablet.  Even the parent volunteers were impressed by the technology behind these machines as well as the speed of quilting process.

 

Teacher pointing out the tablet to some of the students.

Teacher pointing out the tablet to some of the students.

Children watching the quilting machine

Children watching the quilting machine

 

Next we had the children do a scavenger hunt, which they enjoyed and were quite good at!

Class picture at Quilt Crossing

Class picture at Quilt Crossing

Belen really enjoyed the field trip with her class

Belen really enjoyed the field trip with her class

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The morning passed quickly and before we knew it, it was time for the children to return to school.  I gave each of them a little bookmark I made to serve as a reminder of their field trip and escorted them out to their bus.

I Love to Read Bookmarks

I Love to Read Bookmarks

Happy Belen on the Bus

Happy Belen on the Bus

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a pleasure to spend time with the first graders on Thursday and Friday of this week and share with them my passion for quilting.  There were 21 students in the class and they were so well behaved and genuinely interested.  They were so much fun to be with and on Friday evening I received a text message from Belen’s teacher that read…

“Quick story… on Friday the kids have to select a book to spend the week practicing, until they can read it fluently.  Today, Grady walked up to me with The Quiltmaker’s Gift and said, “This will be perfect!”  🙂

That really made my day!

Happy quilting,

Jane

 

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New Look for Rick Rack and Polka Dots

Version 2

New Logo Design for Rick Rack and Polka Dots Pattern Company, LLC

As you know, For the past few years, I have been developing patterns for my company, Rick Rack and Polka Dots Pattern Company.  It is something I really enjoy doing and I love to share my patterns and ideas with others in my classes and through the stores where my patterns are sold.

Ten of my published patterns as of July, 2015

Ten of my published patterns as of July, 2015

In July of this year, while attending a Bernina Conference in Phoenix, AZ, one of the major  pattern distributors, Brewer Quilting and Sewing Supplies, scheduled a meeting with me to discuss my patterns.  My name had been given to them by Val and Diane, the owners of Bernina Connection in Phoenix, AZ.  Val and Diane carry my patterns and are two delightful ladies who have a beautiful store (a “must see” if you are in Phoenix).

I was elated about Brewer’s interest and upon their request, submitted my products for review.  I am extremely  pleased to announce that Brewer has picked up my patterns for distribution. This is so exciting for me, because up until now, I have been wearing all the hats for Rick Rack and Polka Dots, including pattern design, sample making, photography, printing, marketing, distribution, fulfilling all the orders and, of course, accounting.  I’m anxious to partner with Brewer as they have a sales force who will market my patterns and a distribution team to help fulfill orders to retail stores/customers.

Assortment of patterns ready to ship to Brewer

Assortment of patterns ready to ship to Brewer

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Packing slip (I’ve whited out some info.) ready for Brewer

These past few months have been busy with all the paperwork, etc. and I’m learning a lot along the way.  In addition, I developed a logo for Rick Rack and Polka Dots Pattern Company, LLC to help distinguish my patterns when they are on the store display racks.  I will also be developing a new blog banner, etc. and enjoy working with Kate, my Graphic Designer.  She worked her magic and transformed my original logo sketch into the our final design, with a few minor tweaks along the way.

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Preparing to ship "rep samples" of some of my patterns for Brewer

Preparing to ship “rep samples” of some of my patterns for Brewer

 

 

 

 

 

 

New display rack at Quilt Crossing

New display rack at Quilt Crossing

The Quilt Crossing in Boise, Idaho, currently carries all my patterns and I so appreciate all their encouragement and support over the years.  I have been working on a new rack for their store to make it easier to display my patterns.  Thanks again to Patty and Laura for their continued business.  It is such a pleasure to work with you!

I’m looking forward to the exciting opportunities ahead and also want to thank all my customers for your continued support.  Your enthusiasm, interest, and feedback help to fuel my ideas and keep me energized for who knows what’s next!

Thanks again to all of you!

Happy sewing!

Jane

 

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