When I set up my website in August 2006, I committed to putting new Quilt Tops on the New Tops Page on the first of each
month and I've been able to do that every month. I don't take pre-orders from the Today's Work page because I want to stick to
my original commitment of new tops being sold only on the New Tops page.
The Today's Work page is intended as a way to share my process of completing a Quilt Top with anyone interested.
Tops that I complete during a month will be on the website for Sale on the first of the next month. Sales will be on a "First
Come, First Serve" basis after the Quilt Tops are put on the New Tops page on the first of the month.
If you'd like me to send you an Email reminder on the first of each month, when the new tops are put on the website, just send
E Mail and I'll put your name on my Mailing List.
|I'm going to post some pictures of whatever I'm working on each day. This doesn't exactly show how to make a quilt
top, but it will show a quilt top being "born." Hopefully, it will be a little like a quilting blog.
I think the most important thing to know about how to make a quilt, is that there are as many right ways to make a quilt
as there are people who are happy with the quilt they've made.
I'll just do one page and then delete from the bottom as the page fills. All of the information from my Today's Work page
is archived on Flickr if you want to see older entries.
If you click on these pictures, you can get a real close-up shot, where you can see mistakes, dust and all kinds of fun
|Woo-Hoo, I'm all excited!
My daughter wrote and my son
illustrated two children's books!!
The books are available on Amazon
- just click on the book to go there.
|Looks like this fabric will give some
nice variety in the blocks!
|These blocks are going to be pretty light,
so I decided to set them with some
scrappy, darker greens. I'll use this
modified Shoo Fly and set the blocks on
point. The Shoo Fly on the right was the
first one I made, but the stacked areas
seemed too large because I wanted them
to "float" a bit more, so I'm going with the
sizes on the Shoo Fly on the left. Not a
big difference, but enough. The block on
the right will go into my This & That Box.
|Now I can see what it will look
like. I'm adding some brighter
greens to the dark ones so the
background doesn't get boring.
|Time to decide on the setting
triangles. I'll decide if I'm going to
group these blocks for a light area or
leave them random like this after I
have the setting triangles done.
|"A Gathering of Greens" is all done and the
binding will be in a green. What fun to see
all of those different green fabrics! I made
the center sections of the alternate block
smaller than the corners, just so they
wouldn't make a square when combined with
the octagon corners. Don't know why, I just
wanted a different shape there.
|I really like it when I think the stacking
improves the look for the fabric!
|I think stacking will be
good for this fabric.
|A plan! What looks almost like
black in the picture is really dark
blue. I think this design will tame
the focus fabric a bit. There will
be three different dark blue solids,
but I think they will blend OK.
|Ready to sew these together.
This focus fabric created
blocks with a lot of variety!
|"Floating Octagons" is all done and the
binding will be in the focus fabric. I like
this design because sometimes I see a
checkerboard background, sometimes
diagonal rows of bow ties and other
times, the octagons:)
|This is from a collection of fabrics that
don't fit into any color or theme group.
I'm making each block in a round with
the same fabric in each log position
and having the two sides of the Log
Cabin block at least a little different in
value. After those considerations,
anything goes :)
|Ready to sew these together.
I'm always amazed at how well
the values show up once you
put Log Cabin blocks together!
|There are a lot of larger scale
prints in this, so, even though each
block in a round is made with the
same fabrics in the same position,
you get a scrappy look.
|"Light & Dark Cabins" is all done
and the binding will be in one of
the fabrics in the quilt top.
|Next up...these two fabrics. The
one on the right is so tightly
packed and the one on the left so
airy that I'm hoping they will go well
together to make some interesting
octagons. I have four repeats of
each, so it works out just right.
|I think I'll get some good
Kaleidoscope circles with
|Ready for the corners, which I
think I'll do all in white.
|"Tea Time" is all done and the
binding will be in the border
fabric. I do love the many
different looks you can get with
the Kaleidoscope block!
|I had four repeats of this fabric,
so I'm using two stacks of four to
make my octagons.
|I decided on an Irish Chain
setting for these octagons.
Hopefully, I'll be able to get a
better picture of the colors later.
|"Dusky Roses" is all done
and the binding will be in
pink. Very gentle colors!
|I like combining the octagons
with Irish Chains.
|After the quiet colors of the last
quilt top, I wanted something
bright. This should do it!
|"Calypso" is all done and the
binding will be in the black & white
fabric. Love this layout, so, of
course, now I can think of so many
other fabrics I want to try it in!
|Love the saturated
colors in this piece.
|The tightly packed, small
scale fabrics make stacks that
really do look like
|This fabric is creating a unique and
intricate design in each octagon!
Such fun to do that final seam and
turn the block to see what I've got :)
The color is a little off in this picture.
The one stripe is actually a hot pink
instead of the red.
|"Birds of a Feather" is all done and the binding will
be in the focus fabric. I'll probably revisit this
design lots of times! Hard to believe that small print
made so many different designs.
|I had two pieces of a jungle animal panel,
so I'm using the lions as a focal point and
the other half I cut up to use in the Log
Cabins. I had scraps left over from
making a stack n whack with a
companion piece to the panel, so I'll use
them as well. I don't know if I'll have
enough animal prints to do each round,
but if not I'll fill in with something else.
|I wanted to use the four stacks but needed a background
fabric. I auditioned the four fabrics on the left with some
stacked pieces laid out on them. I considered the gold on
the upper right, but obviously decided on the
turquoise/green piece. I felt the gold piece would take
away from the lions and I needed something other than the
red and zebra to balance out all of the browns.
|"Jungle Royalty" is all done and
the binding will be in an animal fur
print. It was nice to have the
companion piece to the lion panel
so I could use it to kind of blend
the panel into the Log Cabins.
|I'm making some four patches with
two inch floral strips. I'll make
some more and then fill in some
spaces with 3.5 inch floral strips,
as in the picture on the right.
|Ready to sew this together.
Many of the vertical seams are
already taken, so while it looks
like a rectangle now, it will end
up being square.
|"Sweet & Scrappy" is all done and
the binding will be in a floral. I find
it so hard to get a good picture of
a light colored quilt top!
|The colors are off here...what looks
like black is actually a dark maroon.
The octagons look so different set this
way with them all going the same
direction. I usually turn every other
one. I like both ways - just different.
|As I added blocks to this, it started to
look too busy or too tight or too
something. I decided to add some
white blocks with just the corners
taken off to match the Kaleidoscope
blocks. I think this added some
interest and also made some nice
circles. Off to sew it together.
|"Strawberry Parfait" is all done
and the binding will be in the
border fabric. Really like the
way this turned out :)
|I have a bunch of one and a half
inch solid squares, so I'm using
them as nine patch centers for
Log Cabins. I'm not using any
whites, but there will be some
very light pastels.
|Coming along.... I like this and
may have to try it with regular
scraps, maybe using red or
white for part of the nine patch.
|"Nine Patch Cabins" is all done
and the binding will be in black.
The nine patch centers really give
some motion to this setting!
|Look at this wonderful box of
scraps I received yesterday! As
I was sorting them, I felt like I
was building a rainbow :)
|When I make my bias bindings, I cut
a large triangle at the beginning
before I start cutting strips. They've
accumulated enough to make
something. I'm going with these
mismatched Hourglass blocks, which
will set in at seven and a half
inches. Larger than my usual
scrappy blocks so it's easier to see
the different fabrics.
|I like making these blocks! I think I'll
have some matching to form an on
point square and turn others so that
lights or darks come together.
|"Scrappy Hourglass" is all done and
the binding will be in a red print. Fun
way to use large scrappy triangles!
|The stripes make cool stars! This isn't
the background color at all - it has
much more of a green tint to it.
|Love watching a quilt top change as I
add each element. I was going to use
the turquoise quarter stars in the
setting triangles, as in picture number
four, but while I liked the top and
bottom ones, I didn't like the ones on
the sides. So, I reversed them, as in
picture five and I'll go with that.
Different colors at different times of the
day and I still don't have a good shot
of the background color!
|"Striped Stars & Squares" is all done
and the binding will be in the stripe, cut
on the bias, if I have enough.
Otherwise, it will be in a blue. I finally
figured out what the color of the
background fabric is - when seen in
person, it's the color of brass!
|Love it when one of my
blooms. Doesn't happen
often, but it's worth the wait :)
|I'm going to have a fun day
|A plan....I'm going to use some
stacked square in a square
blocks for one round and have
the rest in octagons.
|"Stripes Interrupted" is all done and
the binding will be in the striped fabric,
cut on the bias. I had enough fabric to
fill in those corners with more octagons
or square in a square blocks, but I
liked the look of this with just the cream
in the corners. I'll use the rest of the
striped fabric for another top of some
kind, maybe with a dark background.
|I'm sorting through the piles of
rainbow colored scraps I showed the
other day. I'll cut them into sizes I
usually use and make Log Cabins
with one and a half inch strips as I
go along. Fun day :)
|I'm working from my 1.5 inch strips
that are already cut and cutting
from new scraps as I go. For me,
this is such a nice way to work
because I get to change colors
and also see new scraps!
|"Hey Good Lookin' " is all done and the binding will be in black. The
next picture is a close up which explains the name of the top.
|Next up...some Court House
Steps. On the browns, they'll be
scrappy but with a lot of the same
fabrics and I think I'll use some
different florals in the vertical strips.
|"Traditional Courthouse" is all done
and the binding will be in brown.
Scrappy and Courthouse Steps - two
of my favorite things!
|Some value progression Log
Cabins in greens.
|So far, so good. These
always keep me anxious
to see the next round!
|"Green Glow" is all done and
the binding will be in, you
guessed it.....green! So many
different fabrics in this :)
|I really liked that fabric in the
squares so I wanted to come up
with a way to showcase it. I'll make
some of these blocks and then
decide how to set them.
|Deciding if I want to set these with or
without sashing. Right now, I think
without, but that may change......
|"Shadow Boxing" is all done and the
binding will be in a medium brown.
The blue box outlines set in at only half
an inch, but they really show up!
|After cutting for a bunch of
scrappy tops, it's nice to do
|This pretty fabric is making some
nice stacked blocks! It's hard to
beat florals for stacking :)
|This is as many octagons as I
can make from the fabric I
have, but I have a plan for the
rest of the space :)
|Ready for the corners on the
octagons. I'm going to use
dark corners and I'm anxious
to see how that looks.
|"Between Cool & Warm" is all
done and the binding will be in
the floral focus fabric. I really
like the contrast in this one!
|I think this kind of
patchwork looking fabric
makes nice stacks.
|Good - some variety
in the blocks :)
|I'm going to use an on-point setting,
using these two blocks from the Storm
at Sea design as cornerstones and
sashing. I was so glad to have these
two fabrics that I think go so well with
the focus fabric :)
|Coming along! Time to figure
out the setting triangles.
|"Patchwork Octagons" is all done and
the binding will be in the focus fabric.
The diamond block used in the
sashing takes a lot of trimming as it's
being made, but I really like the result.
|I've used the first half of this fabric
before, to make stacked octagons, so
this time I want something different.
|The blades are done. I'm
pretty sure I'm going to use
the yellow print for the block
corners, but something
brighter in the block centers.
|OK, the red centers certainly
brightened things! On to the
|I wasn't going to sash these but then I
decided to for two reasons. First, the
sashing gives a nice place for all of those
seams on the block edges to go and
secondly, I wanted the red cornerstones.
They will set in at three quarters of an
inch and I think they're cute.
|"Red Heart Surround" is all
done and the binding will be in
the yellow. I think the red did
a lot for this top!
|Cabins - always a
favorite of mine!
|The rest of the blocks will be
without any white and then I think
I'll scatter them and set them on
point. We'll see how they look.....
|Blocks on the left are finished and
on the right is the way I'm setting
them. Looking at the picture on
the left makes me think that I'll do
another of these with a straight set
and the light blocks running
diagonal through the middle and
going darker as I get to the edges.
One top always leads to another!
|"Scattered Squares" is all done and
the binding will be in the green fabric
used in the setting triangles. The
white squares really show up against
the colorful scrappy background!
|I keep a box of Log Cabin "logs" cut to
size and separated by light and dark,
and I add to it whenever I'm cutting
scraps. I used from the dark logs for
the last quilt top and this time, I'm
using from the lights. It always
surprises me how dark the light logs
look when paired with white.
|Coming along and the light
diagonal is starting to show up.
|"Diagonal Whites" is all done and
the binding will be in a muted pink
stripe, cut on the diagonal. Loved
making this and looking at all of
these different fabrics!
|These two tops are basically
the same blocks, just different
coloring and different setting.
|I want this one to look vintage. I'm
using reproduction fabrics, the classic
Barn Raising setting and the philosophy
of using a fabric until it's done, where
ever it ends. These logs are cut from
one and a quarter inch strips, so set in
at three quarters of an inch. I usually
use one and a half inch strips and
these are so different, both the sewing
and also how they look in the blocks.
|While I'm always somewhat anxious to
sew blocks together, I'm even more so
when the blocks are falling off the
design wall like this! Also, when the
logs set in at three quarters of a inch,
taking the seams changes the colors a
good bit. For instance, I think the
poison green in the upper right section
will show about the right amount when
the seams are taken.
|"Yesteryear" is all done and I
haven't decided on the binding
yet. This really turned out just
the way I'd hoped it would :)
|I have enough of these for
|I like the way these would look set
as they are on the right with
corners in the peachy background
fabric, but I want to add a little
brightness, so I'm going to use the
yellow for block corners and also
as sashing. I can see some circles
form when these are set without
sashing and I hope it will still give
circles after the sashing is added.
|I need to sew some of this together
before I can even see what I need
for the setting triangles!
|"Hearts & Flowers" is all done and the
binding will be in the two green florals
combined. Two of the hearts are a
slightly darker salmon color because I
ran out of the first fabric!
|I think these two blocks combined
to make some nice shapes.
|I find this such a pleasant way to sew
blocks. My logs are cut to size and as
a pile gets low, I add to it with new logs
put on the bottom of the pile. My hope
is that not all of the piles run out at the
same time, so that a fabric carries
through to the next color block. So, I
get to cut some, then sew a bunch of
blocks, put them on the design wall
and decide what to cut to add to the
bottom on the piles :)
|I'm intrigued by the Log Cabins
with the three quarter inch logs.
On this one, I'm using light and
dark scrappy blues combined with
different colored scraps.
|I get a kick out of how
different a fabric can look
depending on what's next to it.
|All ready to sew
these together :)
|"Blue Plus" is all done and the
binding will be in a dark blue. This
one looks pretty sedate from a
distance because you see the value
but, as you can see from the next
picture, up close it's a riot of color!
|When stay-stitching edges, applying
borders or even sewing long seams
on large pieces, I accordion fold the
piece before I take it to the machine.
Makes it so much easier when the
weight of the top is working for me
instead of against me.
|Mardi Gras fabrics are
usually great for stacking.
|This star can make some neat
secondary designs, depending on how
you do the background fabrics.
|Loving the designs this
fabric is making :)
|Stacks keep me interested because, even though I have a general idea of what a stack will look like,
there are always elements of the finished block that surprise me. On top are three eight-stacks of
diamonds and below them are the blocks they made. These are cut from a 2.5 inch strip, so when the
seam allowances are taken, the finished block looks quite different from the stack set.
|I must really want to talk about stacking this morning! I never lay out stacks to see which point I
want in the middle, but here's a demonstration of how different the blocks can look. The top and
bottom, left is from one set of eight-stacks using a different end for the center. Same on the
right. I'd be happy with any of these, but since they're laid out and I can see them, I'll choose the
top left and the bottom right for when I sew the blocks.
|Ready for the border :) Setting the
stars next to each other really changes
the look of them. Sometimes I see the
stars, sometimes the black on-point
squares and sometimes the purple &
green pinwheels! I want to get some
yellow in the border so I'll have all
three Mardi Gras colors.
|You can get so many different
designs by changing some of
the octagon pieces.
|"Bourbon Street" is all done and I
think I'll go back to the green fabric
for the binding. The border took a
lot of piecing, but I really like it!
|Back to Log Cabins with the one and a
quarter inch strips. I don't know how I'll
set these yet, but I like the colored
squares which kind of look like they're
set on top of the brown and tan strips.
|Trying out a few of the Log Cabin settings. Right now,
I'm thinking of number five - Straight Furrows, but I may
go with number four - Zig Zag of some kind.
|"Squares on Stripes" is all done and
the bias binding will be in scrappy
browns with some sections of gold,
orange and green. I'm so happy with
the way this one turned out :)
|I've been working with these one and a quarter inch strips long
enough that, next time I use one and a half inch strips, they are
going to seem giant! For these I'm using the text and ticking fabrics
on one side throughout and the other side done in two scrappy
florals for each block. At this point, I think I'm going with the zig-zag
on the right, but I may go back to the triangles on the left.
|"Text, Ticking & Flowers" is all done
and the binding will be in a small
back & white print. Really like the
way the bright florals show up
against the black & white prints! I
think I may be done with these three
quarter inch logs for a while :)
|I made a small piece of batik squares,
set on point and then matched them
with a tie dye piece. As you can see, I
reversed the direction of the tie dye
piece. I sliced both fabrics into 2.5
inch strips and then sewed them back
together, keeping all of the strips in the
|"Blend" is all done and the
binding will probably be a dark
batik and will have some pieces
of the tie dye fabric in it. This
was a fun little piece!
|I wanted to try the same idea as in
the last top of putting two different
panels together in strips. this time, I
made some improv panels with four
different batiks. To get the diagonal
stripes, I cut the fabrics on the bias,
so they set in with the grain lines
going up and down. I'm curious to
see how the strips will piece and also
what this will look like!
|"Batik Improv" is all done and
the binding will be a scrappy mix
of the four fabrics used in the
top. I find it so interesting to see
what designs the two beginning
fabric panels will form!
|Some batik scraps. I think I'll make a Log Cabin Spiral in kind of a rainbow
progression. Since I love bright batiks with black, I'll use black for one side
of the Log Cabins. I'll go for a 7 x 9 setting, so I'll need 63 blocks. I've
sorted the scraps into seven color groups, so I'll need to cut for nine blocks
from each group. If I don't have enough in the scraps, or If I need more of a
color (like I probably will on the blues) I'll go to my regular stash of batiks. I
really like working this way - in small "bites"- so about the time I'm getting
bored with a color, it's time to move on to the next color.
|A beginning! If it turns out that
this design doesn't look good
where the colors change, I'll try
some other design......
|I changed the number of blocks in the
turquoise group and did one less of
the greens so I could make the corners
black to make the spiral stand out
more and enhance the asymmetrical
look. Ready to sew these together!
|"Batik Spiral Rainbow" is all
done and the binding will be in
black. The batiks have such
|Still scrapping and I'm back to the
one and a quarter inch strips.
|"Scrappy & Red" is all done and the
binding will be in red. The reds really
made this one nice and bright!