My next & last new pattern that I want to introduce to you is

Susanna.

I know what you’re thinking,

“Why didn’t she put MORE little Dresden plates on this quilt?”, right? Lol

Susanna started with the “Susanna” collection by Betsy Chutchian for Moda.

I decided to start with 2 of the blues to make Tiny Dresden plates.

Chain piecing is the best!

It’s a great time to let your mind wander

or listen to a good movie that you’ve watched over & over again.

The time passes quickly as I watch the Tiny Dresden plates emerge.

Soon I was auditioning more fabrics to join my TD plates.

If I’m not absolutely sure of all of the fabrics

I will make just one center (not even applique it down)

then make fabric decisions.

Once I narrowed that down,

I went to “work” making the center circles for all of the TD plates.

Not work at all, really.

I love to make the TD centers!

I know, how weird am I???

As a matter of fact,

I offered to make Loraine, one of my pattern testers’,

centers for the TD’s she was making to test my Jellyroll Gemstones pattern.

It took less than an hour

since I had the circles already cut in my little canister.

Pressing then cutting them into strips for easy trimming is key.

With a movie on, the time flies by!

Now before the rest of my pattern testers get in an uproar,

I’m happy to make your centers for you too!

Aren’t these fabulous?

Once my design was ironed out I needed to make a few more TD’s.

Have I told you lately that I actually use my rotary cutter

to cut the string apart & to trim the seam allowance?

Yup!

It’s so much quicker that using my scissors, but you better be careful!

Concentration is key…

And it doesn’t hurt to have some nourishment nearby at times.

The mindless making of the center circles also lets

my mind think of the next upcoming fabric decisions.

Oh but wait, there are more!

I actually took this project to our retreat at Rosemary’s the beginning of February.

No TV watching here,

just good conversation & good food too!

Aren’t they lovely???

In the midst of this project, Clare, our youngest daughter, bought me this cute cart.

She thought it would look nice in our booth.

It’ll be going with us to the Kansas City Regional Quilt Festival next week,

but for now it’s looking cute in my sewing room with what’s left of “Susanna”.

More decisions….

and auditions….

and decisions…

and cutting!

Then some organizing.

What a treat for me to relive the process!

My camera is my best friend while I make lots of decisions.

Once I finally liked all of the blocks,

and sewed them together,

I had to make the border fabric decision.

And that decision led to

more Tiny Dresdens!!!

They’re just what the corners of this quilt needed.

I love the addition of the corner blocks.

They really add a lot don’t you think?

It breaks up all of the blue

and gives your eye something else pretty to see.

After Tamara once again did a lovely job of quilting it for me

Nemo & I set it up to be photographed by Scott.

I love the process more than actually having the finished quilt.

How about you?

What’s your favorite part?

 

Wanna win one of my 3 new patterns?

 

Your choices are either Dresden Feathered Stars,

 

Jellyroll Gemstones,

or Susanna.

Just leave me a comment telling me

1. What’s your favorite part of the quilting process?

&

2. What’s your favorite of my new patterns?

I’ll give 3 lucky quilters their choice!

I’ll pick the winners Sunday at 6 p.m. CST.

Until then,

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My next new pattern that I want to introduce to you is

Jellyroll Gemstones.

The rainbow of color across this quilt can be made entirely

with 1 jelly roll of 40, 2 1/2″ strips.

 

This is Flower Garden Gatherings by Primitive Gatherings for Moda.

 

When I started this quilt I cut all the petals

& sewed them into a long string.

I encharged Betsy to keep them tangle-free.

She did a great job.

You can’t even see her beneath them all!

Next, I sewed & sewed, & sewed some more…

Eventually I had a nice array of plates.

I auditioned many background fabrics to complete my design,

but couldn’t find just the right one so they rested a while.

If you remember, I mentioned

that I picked up this cool Shedd’s Peanut Butter tin in Michigan

while traveling to teach at the Berrien Towne & Country Quilters.

It was the perfect place for the completed plates to hang out

while I did more traveling last fall to teach

& to vend & then attend fall quilt market.

In February at our retreat at Rosemary’s I got them out again

& auditioned more background fabrics & decided on just the right one.

So, I went to work & cut all the pieces for the blocks.

Then I assembled them into little kits for each block

so the color combinations wouldn’t be duplicated.

My new-to-me wooden tray was the perfect holder for the little kits.

& my new-to-me m&m’s (or Dr. Pepper) holder

from my friend & fellow retreater, Chris, now holds my bottle near my machine!

Soon I had a nice stack of blocks ready to have a Tiny Dresden appliqued to the center.

Soon after that I ran out of thread!

I use a lot of Sulky’s Medium Taupe thread!

Fortunately I had more thread, so I was able to finish all of the blocks.

Of course Nemo, my supervisor, was always good at

keeping an eye on me to be sure I kept working!

Laying out the blocks was next

& I soon decided that I had just the right colors in just the right places,

then I added the Tiny Dresden plates at the intersections of the blocks.

 

I decided a small sashing was necessary

to space the Tiny Dresden plates a bit farther from the blocks.

So another fabric audition was necessary.

I decided on a low contrast between the two fabrics.

Next, I went to work sewing sashing strips between the blocks.

 

Thanks again to my friend, Chris,

I numbered the rows with the pins that she made for each of our guild members last year.

 

What a great trick to keep track of the rows.

Nothing is worse than laying everything out & getting it just right,

then getting the rows mixed up & sewing a green block next to another green block!

My numbered pins now hang out in this clip-on pincushion on Betsy’s shoulder.

I don’t have to wonder where I put them!!!

Next, I appliqued the Tiny Dresden plates to the sashing as I assembled the rows.

Notice how the Medium Taupe thread blends well with lots of colors?

This saves a lot of time not having to change thread color for each plate.

Finally the quilt top was complete & beautifully quilted by Tamara,

then photographed by Scott, all being overseen by our late friend, Nemo.

I still have a string of petals hanging out on Betsy

just as they’ve been doing since September 4th as you can see by the calendar!

Eventually I’ll find a use for them too.

For now I just love them hanging out with me in my sewing atelier :)

Jellyroll Gemstones is now available on my website.

One more new pattern to go.

Until then,

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Moving right along into Day 7…

Day 7

These are the blocks of the day.

I’ve been out of town for a few days

and I took one of my featherweight sewing machines

and these blocks to work on.

The weather in mid-Eastern Illinois wasn’t forecasted to be very nice,

so just in case I was snowed in, or if I got the chance to sew I could.

Since I don’t sew on my featherweight machines very often,

I kind of have to re-teach myself to use them.

You know, where is that pesky scant 1/4″?

How do I rewind a bobbin if heaven forbid I run out?

Imagine my surprise when I got done with this square-in-a-square and it looked like this:

Day 7block 4 progress

Perfect!!!

I can’t say this for all of my sewing all of the time, for sure.

I was very pleased with this progress however.

I also found it very nice that the pattern actually told me what size this piece was supposed to measure at this point, thank-you!

Day 7-Block 4 PrimitiveGatherings

Block #4 by Primitive Gatherings.

This block turned out so nice…I love it!

Day 7-Block 19 Me&MySister

Block #19 by Me & My Sister.

This block was a breeze too.

I wouldn’t mind making more of these either.

Day 7-Block 13 MalkaDubrawsky

Block #13 by Malka Dubrawsky.

Looks pretty good from here, but…

I had to re-sew two of the seams, one of them twice to make it satisfactory to me.

I had to laugh when I was pressing it and trimming the threads before I photographed it.

It reminded me of a funny story that my MIL & husband tell of my SIL and her 4-H pancakes.

Anyone take “Milk & Eggs in Your Meals” for a 4-H project?

Back in the day, for the show, you had to make 3 pancakes EXACTLY the same size and present them on a plate to the judges.

They would critique them for size, color and of course they got to taste them too…

(how many COLD pancakes they must have had to taste that day, yuk!)

and then you were awarded a ribbon.

Well, that morning was very stressful to say the least, said SIL could not get 3 pancakes the same size to save her life, so she got out a pair of scissors and trimmed away the excess!

I can’t image the judges didn’t notice cut edges and I never did hear what color the ribbon was for those pancakes, but it makes everyone laugh whenever we are reminded of it!

This is what I thought of while I was trimming the threads.

Too bad I didn’t think of the pancake story before I ripped out those seams.

I probably could have saved myself some time and just trimmed something instead.

Hopefully yours will go together more smoothly, but if not…

Until next time,

Susan