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  • T-Shirt Bags

    T-shirt Bag T-shirt Bag

    It is Memorial Day Weekend that means warm weather can’t find a bag to take to the pool or beach. Back in April sometime around Earth Day I was aimlessly looking at different websites were I came across how to recycle old t-shirts. I cannot remember where I saw this. But I thought what a clever way to reuse those old favorite tees that you got a stain on or accidentally splashed bleach on or even your kid’s favorite tees that they have out grown. Turn them into bags. Make a bag for groceries, kid’s overnights, or even to give away as a gift. I myself never have enough bags to put projects in.

    Step One: Find a t-shirt that you don’t mind cutting up.

    FullSizeRender (16)

    Step Two: Cut sleeves and ribbing off the neck and arm. (I like cutting at the seam and I do the front first and lay it flat to cut a little more off the back so that the front and back matches)


    Step Three: Turn t-shirt inside out and lay flat making sure that the bottom seam is even then cute 3-4 inches on both sides after that is done you are ready to start cutting anywhere from ½ an inch to an inch. I didn't measure I just guessed at it.


    Step Four: Pick an end and start making knots all the way across.

    Remember you want to make sure to turn your shirt inside out so your knots don’t show. I hope that you enjoy recycling some old t-shirts. I don’t know if you can post photos of your projects. But if you can I would love to see some of them. I know that I didn't get this from a Leisure Arts book but here is another clever idea to recycle your favorite T-Shirts a book by Leisure Arts called T-Shirt Quilt by Linda Causee. Maybe some day when I have enough nerve I will do this with all of my Hard Rock Cafe tees that I have collected over the years.

  • I'm Still Thinking About Quilts

    It's still National Sewing Month and I'm still thinking about quilts.  I love them.  I love everything about them.  There was an exhibit on quilts near my house this summer and I think I went to look at them every week.  Fine, sometimes twice a week.  Quilts are fascinating!  They're a multifaceted art project to treasure forever and keep people warm!  They blow my mind.  Did you know about Memory Quilts?  This sounds like an amazing resource!  Amazing!

    There's a log cabin-style quilt made with ties!

    And what about T-Shirt Quilts


    That's another amazing way to make memory quilts out of beloved objects. I love that there are quilt squares to sew and intersperse with the t-shirt squares.  It's beautiful.

    And I have to tell you about the Crazy Quilt Stitches Pocket Guide


    I love crazy quilts.  I don't know that I'll ever be gutsy enough to try to make one, but I love them.  They're the epitome of DIY and modifications and taking whatever you have and making it beautiful.  Not only do most crazy quilts feature different fabrics in all textures and colors, but they're usually pieced together with different stitches that just as eye-catching and different as the fabric selections. 

    While we're on the topic of pocket guides (dadgum, I love these pocket guides), I want to mention the Applique Basics Pocket Guide


    I'm almost certain that my mom made the pattern on the cover in a class once.  Seriously, that's the only reason I'm mentioning this.  I remember being really impressed at the time (in addition to being able to quilt little microscopic stitches, my mom has mad applique skills) with this great daffodil top she made for a wall hanging and I got really excited when I saw this guide. 

    Oh, and remember Christmas Sparkle?  You might not because I wrote about it nearly a year ago.

    I love that there are people who love holidays so much that they'll write whole pattern books revolving around them.  These designs were lovely, and didn't necessarily have to sparkle.  But I bet they're truly incredible when they do. I think a Christmas quilt is an amazing treasure to make. 

    And lastly, I want to mention 50 States Quilt Blocks again. 

    I maybe mentioned it in a post last week and then didn't link to it.  Whoops.  Sorry, 50 States Quilt Blocks. I love this. Enough to mention it twice and actually link to it.  The product description states that there are four quilt projects, one of which calls for a mix of states/blocks that show a family's history.  Oh, my heart.  I don't know about you, but quilts get me right in the heart. 

    And they capture my imagination.  I'm getting all kinds of ideas from just looking through some of the titles on Leisure Arts.  God help me if I ever make another attempt at making one!  My heart and head could just explode from all the feelings and possibilities.

  • Quilts For Beginners!

    Looking for perfect for beginner, quick and easy, quilt designs? Look no further that the six designs you’ll find in the new Leisure Arts quilt pattern book by Judith McCabe— Color Block Quilts!
    Color Block Quilts
    Vivid contrasts and large fabric pieces make these color block quilts exciting to see--and a snap to sew! Judith McCabe created these patterns to be fuss-free and fast to finish. The contemporary designs truly are perfect for the beginning quilter, while the experienced quilter will enjoy the exhilaration of achieving almost instant results. Whatever your skill level, these designs will add new energy to your home decor. The quilts look amazing when draped over a chair, hung on the wall, or spread over a table. And they're wonderful as quick and thoughtful gifts! Designs include Diamond, Ladders, Stacked Blocks, Vertical Strips, Vertical Rows, and Horizontal Strips. Each is shown in two versions, for which full instructions are given.



    Stacked Blocks

    Vertical Strips

    Vertical Rows

    Horizontal Strips
    Meet the Designer: Judith McCabe!
    Interested in needlework since she learned to embroider in Girl Scouts, Judith McCabe has degrees in elementary education and fiber and mixed media. Color Block Quilts is her first quilt book with Leisure Arts, which previously published Judith's cross stitch designs in a book called Li'l Monster Bibs.
    Lil' Monster Bibs features 8 cross stitch designs by Judith McCabe. These zany little monsters will catch Baby's eye with their bright colors and whimsical features. By stitching them on purchased toddler or infant bibs with 14-count inserts, you can easily create cherished keepsakes while making mealtimes more fun for the little one. They're excellent for shower gifts for young mothers who want to avoid the traditional bears and rubber duckies. Designs include I Heart You!, Monster Play Time, Hey Baby!, Monster Group, Peek-A-Boo, Along Came A Spider, Polka Dotted Monster, and Green Monster.
  • Quilt Blocks Go Wild!

    Got a yen to follow this directive and take a walk on the wild side—of quilt blocks? The bright colors plus the fun and funky designs in Quilt Blocks Go Wild were enough to make me (a non-quilter) take a second and much longer look at this way cool new quilt block pattern book!
    Quilt Blocks Go Wild!
    Take a tame, familiar quilt block and unleash it to create a fresh, modern look. Eleanor Levie and five quilters famous for innovation put their spins on well-loved classics. Gorgeous photos make you gaga for wonky hearts, skewed nine-patches, a crazy-quilted star, split Log Cabins, a basket gone bonkers, and more. Guided by easy how-tos and more than 120 step-by-step photos, even beginning quilters can make super-cool pillows, quilts, wall hangings, and bags. There are also plenty of hands-on extras: tips and tricks for color, composition, and design, plus workbook (er, rather playbook) sections that offer lots of jumping-off points to tweak tradition and create your own original blocks. In short, you’ll be wild for these bold takes on old favorites!
    You’re gonna love these classic quilt block projects made with quilt blocks that are twisted and tweaked, sliced and skewed:

    Nine Patch Goes to Pot 

    a pair of potholders by Eleanor Levie

    Basket Goes Bonkers 
    a pocketed wall hanging by Eleanor Levie

    Log Cabin Split Level 
    a table runner by Pam Dinndorf

    Hearts Askew
     a wall hanging by Elizabeth Rosenberg

    Heart of Bold 
    a tote by Elizabeth Rosenberg

    Rail Fence Derailed
     2 pillows by Tonya Ricucci

    Squares Out of Square
     a lap quilt by Karla Alexander

    Drunkards Off The Path
     2 pillows by Malka Dubrawsky

    A Star Partly Crazy
     a bag by Eleanor Levie

    Eleanor Levie!

    Meet the Designers!
    Eleanor Levie thinks of herself as a crazy quilt—warm and a wee bit wacky. Author, editor, and book producer, she loves putting unexpected touches into her quiltmaking and inspiring quilters to go wild! Other quilt block designers featured in this book are Elizabeth Rosenberg, Tonya Ricucci, Malka Dubrawsky, Pamela Goecke Dinndorf, and Karla Alexander.

    If you’re ready to take Granny’s quilt block and kiss tradition goodbye, get ready, get set, go wild, and order your very own copy of Quilt Blocks Go Wild! Now!
  • Quilts to Welcome You Home

    Don't you just love quilts? The homey feel of them? One of the first things I see when a walk in the front door of my house is my vintage Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilt (usually with The Cat asleep in the middle of it)…and I think, “I’m home!” If you’re in search of quilt patterns that make you feel at home (while at the same time being absolutely gorgeous), you need Nancy Rink’s new quilt pattern book—Quilts To Warm Today’s Home!
    Quilts to Warm Today's Home
    How comforting it is to create a sweep of soothing patchwork in colors that remind you of home! These 11 homestyle quilts by Nancy Rink feature traditional pieced designs, with lively appliqued leaves and flowers on several. Instructions are included for a variety of applique techniques, and we've provided quilt-pattern definitions that will help you decide how to machine-quilt your project. Whether you make them as bed quilts, wall hangings, or cozy wraps for use on the sofa, these blankets will welcome you home for many years to come. Enjoy the sweetness of stitching each one with the fabrics that warm your heart.
    Take a look at Nancy’s timeless, yet fresh, designs:
    American Pastimes
    Emerald Spring
    Scraps of Time
    Cumberland Compass
    Homeward Bound
    Pressed Flowers
    Market Blossoms
    Patches of Blue
    Country Crossroads
    Meet the Designer: Nancy Rink!
    Nancy Rink is a quilter, pattern designer, and dye artist whose quilts have won awards at the International Quilt Festival, Kaufman Quilt Quest, and other national shows. Her designs have also been featured in magazines such as Quilter’s Newsletter Magazine, and Quiltmaker. “Quilting has been an incredible journey,” says Nancy, “and I can't wait to see where it takes me next!” For more about Nancy, visit
    Get your copy of Nancy Rink’s Quilts to Warm Today's Home now, and while you’re shopping, check out her first quilt pattern book from Leisure Arts—City Blocks, featuring 10 big-city style contemporary designs! 

    City Blocks
    If you like bold appliques or fast-paced piecing--or both--you’ll adore capturing the big-city style of these 10 contemporary quilts from Nancy Rink! Playa del Sol and Costa del Sol rely on quick piecing and simple blocks, while Bryant Park, City Leaves, and Cosmo Girl feature simple applique and strong graphics. Papillons, Akimbo, Tenderness, Flower Power, and Espresso round out this collection of striking designs. Techniques include applique and patchwork, along with machine quilting. Each design is shown in a lifestyle photograph and an assembly diagram, accompanied by a complete materials list and step-by-step instructions. Wherever you live, there’s a metropolitan pattern in this collection that’s perfect for your home’s decor.

  • Debbie Mumm—Quick Weekend Quilts

    Quilt Fans! Got a free weekend on the horizon? Sometimes those are hard to come by, but when you get one, you can take full advantage of it with inspiration from our newest quilt pattern book from Debbie Mumm—Quick Weekend Quilts!
    Quick Weekend Quilts by Debbie Mumm
    Weekends are the perfect time to immerse yourself in quilting. But if weekend after weekend seems to slip by while dust starts to gather on your projects, sometimes a simple nudge in the right direction can motivate you to make the most of your weekends. This book from celebrated designer Debbie Mumm will help you with preplanning, time-saving strategies, and 45 ideas for quick quilts and clever crafts. A Weekend Planner accompanies each project, and there are tips on sneaking in a little prepping and shopping mid-week that add up to a fun and successful quilting weekend! Projects include bed quilts, lap quilts and throws, pillows, wall art, tabletop runners, and more. Set your sights on this weekend and start stitching up a storm!
    Take a look at just of few of the 45 fast and fun designs you’ll find in Quick Weekend Quilts by Debbie Mumm:
    Floating Squares Quilt
    Triple Dash Throw Quilt
    Cups in the Cupboard Wall Hanging
    Chinese Lanterns Wall Hanging
    Modern Four Petal Flower Quilt
    Botanical Burlap Wall Art
    Decorator Dot Quilt
    Fashion Bed Queen Quilt & Pillows
    Squares & Stripes Row Quilt
    Retro Table Quilt
    Vintage Flowers Wall Quilt
    Vintage Bird Wall Art
    Home Banner Wallhanging
    Re-Usable Weekend Bags
    Block of the Weekend Applique & Pieced Quilt
    Contemporary Classic Throw Pillows
    Meet the Designer: Debbie Mumm
    A talented designer, author, and entrepreneur, Debbie Mumm has been creating charming artwork and quilt designs since 1986. She has authored more than sixty books featuring quilting and home decorating projects and has led her Spokane, Washington-based business to become a multi-faceted enterprise that includes publishing, fabric design, and licensed art divisions.
    Plan ahead for your next free quilting weekend and order your copy of Quick Weekend Quilts by Debbie Mumm. (And while you’re on our site, check out all of our quilt pattern books from Debbie Mumm. Some of them are on sale!
  • Pat Sloan & Applique!

    Incomparable quilt designer / teacher Pat Sloan’s done it again. She’s just released another beautiful quilt pattern book—New Ideas in Applique
    New Ideas in Applique
    Inspired by her love of decorating for the seasons, Pat Sloan has created a stunning block-of-the-month applique quilt and an assortment of fun projects showcasing some of the block designs. Version I of the 85" x 85" quilt is made from vibrant batik fabrics for a bright and bold look. Version II uses more traditional colors and prints for a warm and toasty feel. To make either version of this quilt, you might want to organize or participate in a block of the month group through your local quilt shop or guild, or you can opt to make it on your own from start to finish. But don't stop with the quilt! Other seasonal projects include a tabletop set, a project bag, a pillow, and a throw. Some of the blocks can even be finished as mini quilts.
    Take a peek at Pat Sloan’s projects:
    A Year of Applique Version 1
    A Year of Applique Version 2
    In the Pink
    Slouchy Project Bag
    Snow Day
    Moon Flowers
    Meet the Designer: Pat Sloan!
    You'll never meet a more devoted fan of the quilting arts than Pat Sloan! When she isn't designing fabric, writing quilt books, teaching quilt techniques, or developing patterns, she draws on her background as a computer programmer to maintain her popular website and blog at Pat's joyful approach to quilting seems to be contagious, because "Sloanies" (as Pat's devoted fans call themselves) love to keep up with their favorite designer while she pursues the quilting life with a passion.
    Get Pat Sloan's new book—New Ideas in Applique, now! It's a must-have for any dedicated quilter's pattern library!
  • Quilt Pattern Book Winners from the Pat Sloan Blog Tour

    I’m thrilled to announce the winners of the Pat Sloan Focus on the Center Blog Tour! Each winner will soon be receiving her very own copy of Pat’s new quilt pattern book featuring medallion quilts—Focus on the Center

    • Pat at picked:
    Deb from FL
    Deb from VA

    • Vanessa Christenson at picked:
    Barbara from PA
    Linda from MT

    • Carrie Nelson at picked:
    Jennifer from MN
    Lisa from AK

    • Bonnie Hunter at picked:
    Sue from NY
    Patricia from MI

    • Michele Foster at picked:
    Anna from Alberta, Canada
    Pam from NC

    • Victoria Findlay Wolfe at picked:
    Jane from WA
    Becky from PA

    • Rachel Griffith at picked:
    Flo from Saskatchewan, Canada
    Carla from AZ

    • Jackie Kunkel at picked:
    Debbie from NY
    Kathie from CA

    • Dana Bolyard at picked:
    Carol from GA
    Mary from TX

    • Vicki Welsh at picked:
    Sandi from NY
    Tricia from IA

    • Faith Jones at picked:
    Margaret from OH
    Cathy from WV

    Thanks to everyone for coming by and checking out our Tour and for leaving such wonderful comments about Pat’s new quilt pattern book! A special thanks also goes out to the great group of bloggers kind enough to participate in our Tour! (Be sure to check back in with our bloggers to see what else they’re up to. Lots of cool quilt pattern creativity going on with these folks!) 

    And if you weren’t one of the lucky winners, you can get your very own copy of this exciting quilt pattern book, Focus on the Center, on our site in Print or as an eBook (gotta love these economical and portable eBooks)!

    Let me refresh you on the Focus on the Center details:

    “Start your quilts with a big block, and work your way to the edges! Pat Sloan’s exciting patterns will have you jumping right into the middle of these colorful medallion quilts! The six lap quilts and one bed-size quilt all include plenty of colorful piecing. One quilt has two fun applique options for the center—which just happens to be the perfect size for a table topper! And since you’ll get to use modern quilt-making techniques to create these vintage-inspired quilts, you’ll have the best of old and new, together. There are 7 new looks for medallion quilts: Antique Mist, Arabella’s Courtyard, Blue Lagoon, Checkerboard Deluxe, Rose Garden, Lucky Charms, and All Roads Lead Home.”

    Look at the pretty designs you’ll find inside:

    Antique Mist Quilt
    Arabella’s Courtyard Quilt
    Blue Lagoon Quilt
    Checkerboard Deluxe
    Rose Garden Quilt
    Lucky Charms
    All Roads Lead Home

    How can you resist?
  • Day 5: Pat Sloan Focus on the Center Blog Tour

    Hey Quilt Fans! We’re celebrating Day 5 (the last day) of the Pat Sloan Focus on the Center Blog Tour! Click on over and visit with Vicki & Faith for your chance to win your very own copy of Focus on the Center!

    Saturday May 5
    • Vicki Welsh at
    • Faith Jones at

    Take a peek at the whole Schedule and be sure to visit each stop on the tour for your chance to win. Each blogger’s got two copies to give away! (Can’t wait to win? Get it now at! It’s also available as a pdf download!)

    Oh, and click on Pat’s blog,, during every day of the tour to see what she’s got going on! She’s got giveaways, too!
  • Day 4: Pat Sloan Focus on the Center Blog Tour

    Hey Quilt Fans! We’re celebrating Day 4 of the Pat Sloan Focus on the Center Blog Tour! Click on over and visit with Jackie & Dana for your chance to win your very own copy of Focus on the Center!
    Friday May 4
    • Jackie Kunkel at
    • Dana Bolyard at

    Take a peek at the whole Schedule and be sure to visit each stop on the tour for your chance to win. Each blogger’s got two copies to give away! (Can’t wait to win? Get it now at! It’s also available as a pdf download!)

    Oh, and click on Pat’s blog,, during every day of the tour to see what she’s got going on! She’s got giveaways, too!

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