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.
|"Patriotic Houses" is all done
and the binding will be in the
red & white border fabric. Love
all of the red & white scrappy
fabrics in the background.
|I have a plethora of one and a half
inch squares, so these stars are good
for using some. I'll either sash these
or use an alternate block with them.
|Stars are done and I'm going to
use an alternate block between
them. That one star, on the left in
the second row, is annoying me
because of the two fabrics next to
each other, so I'll change that!
|Ready to sew these together,
which will reduce the amount of
the light blue plaid considerably.
I'm hoping the blue plaid will form
a very subtle Irish Chain and still
let the stars "shine."
|"Wee Scrappy Stars" is all done
and the binding will be in very light
scrappy fabrics. Really pleased
with the way this turned out with
the faint light blue Irish Chain in
|I'm using some already-stacked
fabrics for these, so this part
went very quickly! I usually
make stars with the four sets of
eight stacked diamonds, but this
time, I'm going to do the zig-zag.
|Each diamond is made from four
smaller stacked diamonds.
|"Stacked Zig Zags" is all done and
the binding is in an orange and white
stripe, cut on the bias. So nice to
have lots of already stacked fabrics
to try different designs with!
|Next up. Love this kind of print for
stacking. It's busy with lots of different
shapes and I really can't anticipate
how a block is going to look until I
actually make it. Also, this print has a
lot of gold etching - all of the building
outlines and the small print on the
trees, plus other areas.
|I like using the mottled type fabric, as in
the stars, because with small piecing it
looks almost scrappy. Plus, this piece
had the gold veins in it so it goes well
with the focus fabric. The sashing is 1.5
inch squares applied to the corners of a
2.5 by 6.5 inch piece of the tan fabric.
|While I'm always somewhat
anxious to sew blocks
together, the more messy
they are on the design wall,
the more anxious I am to sew
them together. Guess how
anxious I am on this one :)
|So nice to get those first
few rows sewn so I can
see the proportions after
the seams are taken!
|"Pagodas" is all done and the
binding will be in a brown/orange
fabric with some gold etching.
Always happy to find a new way to
set the stacked octagons!
|I'm sure I'll use this star
sashing again sometime :)
|I want to use these two fabrics
stacked for some blocks. The one
on the right is what I used for a
binding on the last quilt top.
|Now, how shall I set these.......
|"Stacked Leaves" is all done and the
binding will be in the green used in the
sashing. I want to try this block again :)
|The gold etched trees show
up so well in lamplight!
|Wednesday, May 3, 2017
|Wanted to try that
same block again :)
|"Pink & Purple" is all done and the
binding will be in the dark purple used
for the cornerstones. Busy blocks!
|Although there isn't much contrast
in this piece, I'm going to make
some stacks and should get some
very subtle blocks.
|Same block as the last two quilt
tops. This time, I'll set the
blocks without sashing and it will
give a tessellating design.
|Coming along! This
block is so much like the
Dutchman's Puzzle block.
|"Blue & White Tessellations" is all done and I
think the binding will be in the blue print. I
like the split border on a light and dark
tessellations quilt because I think it makes
one see the darks in the upper left corner
and the lights in the lower right corner. The
stacking made each block slightly different,
but still gives the look of a blue & white quilt.
|I think this fabric looks very
much like a vintage tablecloth :)
|Octagons are done and now to
decide on a setting......
|Growing and changing! Once the
seams are taken on these, they should
change one more time to have less of
the yellow and red colors.
|All done and the binding will be
in the focus fabric. This is a
nice way to set the octagons -
very easy to sew together!
|This one kind of gives me a headache
when I look at a large piece of it.
However, I think if I break it up a bit
with some color and stacking, it will still
provide some motion but not enough
to make one seasick! We'll see......
|I stacked the focus fabric and am
combining it with some leftover four
stacks. I'm interested to see how
this works :)
|The octagons are ready for their
corners. Since the four stacks were
already stacked, making the
octagons went pretty quickly.
|"Gobsmacked" is all done and the binding will be in the
turquoise. This ended up with so many different designs in it
that I couldn't find a way to describe it, thus the name!
|Even with such a short repeat,
looks like there will be some
good variety in the blocks.
|Up next. This has such a
short repeat but I'm going to
stack it anyway.
|If you've seen many of the quilt
tops, you know that I find the
stacks endlessly fascinating. On
this fabric, the repeat is five inches
one way and three and three
quarters the other way. That tiny
piece of fabric in the lower middle
of the picture is one repeat. There
are ten more blocks to go and I'll
bet all twenty will be different!
|"Black & White" is all done and the
binding will be in the solid black. Love
that sashing and border fabric!
|I'm so pleased with the
pinwheels this fabric made!
|I started out using leftover, floral eight
stacks and made some different sizes of
octagons. Then, I added four stacks
made from leftover two inch strips, again
in florals. I'm going to use the large scale,
multi colored floral in the last picture for
corners and spacers to try to set all of
these together. That last floral is the
fabric left over from making my sewing
room curtains and is a favorite of mine.
|I sewed these together in
groups to make squares or
rectangles so I could move
them around until I got an
arrangement I liked. I think this
is it. Now, to sew it together.
|"Flower Power" is all done and the
binding will be in a floral. The
blocks set in at three, six, nine and
twelve inches. Really enjoyed
working out how to fit all of these
together in an asymmetrical way
and I'm sure I'll try this again with
leftover stacks....maybe today!
|Here's a section of the back.
Although there were a lot of
seams, the blocks went together
and pressed very well.
|This kind of tightly packed designed
fabric makes stacked octagons that are
different, but not knock-your-socks-off
different. What it does really well is
hide seams as in the border blocks in
the lower left picture. Those blocks
have a lot of seams in the pansy fabric,
but the seams hardly show.
|As I was making the blocks for this top, I just made the pieces as I needed them. However, when
using two colors on the criss-cross, it can get confusing, so I made this little chart for next time I use
this design. If you click on the picture, you can see the numbers for each block and piece. This is
for a seven by nine block setting. I didn't put sizes on because you could use different sizes. I
used 1.5 inch squares in the four patches, so each square sets in at one inch and each four patch
sets in at two inches. My octagons will be six and a half inches, when they get their corners on, so
will set in at six inches. I'll thank myself for this chart next time I make this design!
|Here are the 63 blocks before being
sewn together, well, the octagons don't
have their corners yet either. I could
have made those outside blocks as
two-thirds blocks and then put on a two
and a half inch border around the top,
but for some reason, I did it this way.
|The colors are better in
person but this was the best I
could do with my camera.
|"Crisscross Pansies" is all done and
the binding will be in the blue fabric. I
really like this way of setting blocks
and I'll probably try this again.
|I'm using all values in the pinks
and medium/lights in the browns in
these Courthouse Steps blocks.
Hopefully, the constant checked
centers will pull things together.
|Ready to sew these
together. So much fun to
look at all of these pinks &
browns while I was sewing!
|"Pink & Brown Courthouse Steps" is all
done and the binding will be in the
border fabric. This realty shows some
of the many hues in pink and brown!
The strips for this were one and a
quarter inches, so they set in at
three-quarters of an inch.
|I wanted to make another top
like "Flower Power" ( a couple of
tops back) but this time, using all
different kinds of stacked fabrics
instead of just florals.
|Putting on corners and
filling in spaces :)
|"Jambalaya" is all done and
the binding will be in the
border fabric. Love making
these scrappy stacked tops!
|This is one of my all-time
favorite stacking fabrics.
I've made at least two
previous quilt tops with it.
|Love making these
twelve inch blocks!
|On to corners for all of
the blocks and frames
for the small ones.
|"Big & Bigger Kaleidoscopes" is all
done and the binding will be in the
background fabric. I wasn't sure if
that black & white crosshatch
background fabric would hide
seams well, but it did.
|I can get one more quilt top out of
this fabric. This is my usual size
octagons that set in at six inches.
They seem so very small to make
after making all of those larger ones!
|I think these will create some
nice Kaleidoscope circles
when they're sewn together.
|Ready to sew these together. I used
the light yellow floral in half of the
blocks and on the other half, I used a
tan dotted fabric for most of them. I
changed out of the tan dotted for a very
light floral for a bunch of blocks so
there would be a lighter area through
the center. We'll see if it shows when
everything is sewn together.
|"Circle Play" is all done and the
binding will be in the focus fabric. I
love looking for the circles in a
Kaleidoscope quilt. In this one the
light ones are easy to see and the
dark ones only show up every
once in a while.
|I used two slightly different yellow
solids for the block corners and
three different fabrics to go with
the focus fabric in the blocks.
|There are a lot of mediums in both the light
and dark here and I wasn't sure if they would
carry this design but they seem to be working.
If they hadn't, I'd have arranged the blocks in a
Barn Raising or Straight Furrows design, which
are more definite designs.
|"Shining Cabins" is all done and I
haven't decided on the binding
yet. This one is made with one
and a quarter inch strips, so they
set in at three-quarters of an inch.
|I only have three and a half repeats
of this fabric, but it's a very long
repeat of about seventeen inches.
|I'll start out making some four
patches with the sections of
fabric where I have four repeats.
|After I got some blocks made, on the left, it was
time to figure out what to do with them. The
focus fabric has such cute cherubs in the print
that I wanted to center them. Then I made a few
more of the three stacks and I think I'll use some
form of the arrangement on the right. I can see
that I want some sashing between the blocks and
also that I want an accent color or two added.
|Filling in the spaces and deciding
what comes next as I go along.
|"Cherubs" is all done and the binding
will be in the red with random inserts of
the lighter red. Fun to use two, three
and four stacks in the same top :)
|This was a good fabric to use
for framing a motif.
|My computer has been down
for a few days, so here's a
catch-up collage of the
|"Splash of Summer" is all done
and for the binding, I went back
to the focus fabric. What a fun,
bright fabric to work with!
|I like making these scrappy bargello trips. It takes a few blocks to get into it, but then it goes well. I'm using a
six by six block layout and two inch strips. So, I pulled 36 each of light, light-medium, medium, dark and solid
black. The strips are fifteen inches, which allows for a bit extra. The strips are super scrappy, except for the
solid black, or course. I make the strip set and then subcut into one inch, one and a half, two, two and a half,
three and three and a half. The blocks are in two different orientations, the first shown on the bottom left.
When the second orientation is added, on the bottom right, I think it makes a cool design :)
|Here are the two blocks used for
this design. I could have used a
little more contrast on the right
hand block to use as an example :)
|A lot of different large
scale prints in this!
|"Scrappy Bargello Trips" is all
done and the binding will be in
black. Love working with value!
|These simple, quarter Log Cabins
use a 2.5 inch plaid, 1.5 inch red and
2.5 inch scrappy blue pieces. I'm
deciding on the zig zag arrangement,
like at the top or all facing up and
arranged in a light to dark. Think I'll
go with the light to dark.....
|"Red Shadows" is all done and the
binding will be in the blue fabric
used in the border triangles. I
think these quarter Log Cabins as
such fun to make, I'm going to
make another top with them!
|Another quarter Log Cabin top. I
pulled greens that had a design and,
in some of them, bits of another
color. The colors are off in this
picture but hopefully, as it fills in, I
can get a better shot.
|Ready to sew these together. The
blocks on the bottom look black but
they're really dark green. I was a bit
off on my placement of the blocks on
the design wall :)
|Tuesday, June 13, 2017
|"Shadowed Greens" is all done and
the binding will be in one of the greens
from the quilt top. This is nice to make
- just combining the lightest and
darkest two fabrics for the top row and
the bottom row and then continuing
that way throughout, working toward
the center, where the blocks are made
with the same fabric.
|I've accumulated a lot of 2.5
inch solid squares. Each pile
is a different color, some very
close, but still different.
|I'm pairing the colored squares with
black & white prints that are heavy on
the white. Some of the prints are so
tiny that they read as gray in the
picture, but in person, the black &
white shows. Since this is the third
quarter cabin top I've made in a row, I
guess this is now a series :)
|"Color Pops" is all done and the
binding will be in another black &
white. Black, white and colors is
always fun to work with! The blocks
that look black in the picture show up
their colors much better in person.
|Same block....my hope for these,
once I get them made and
repositioned, is that the skinny zig
zag will show in some places and
in others it will be overtaken by
the busy novelty prints. We'll see.
|On the top left, the blocks are finished
and put up randomly as they were
done. Top left, the blocks are
arranged by value of the background
fabric. The bottom picture shows the
blocks turned so the zig zag shows.
Off to sew them together. Actually, by
changing just a few from the random
layout, I would have been happy with
that. Hmmmm... maybe next :)
|A"Peekaboo Zig-Zags" is all done
and I think the binding will be scrappy
- I mean, why not! Really like the way
the zig-zags come and go :)
|Back from vacation and I had a great family time.
Now, back to piecing - best of both worlds :)
Blocks are done. I arranged them as on the left
while I was putting them up on the wall and then
tried the off center Barn Raising on the right.
Both arrangements are totally random and I
could arrange them by value, however, I think I'll
go with the arrangement on the right.
|"Pink & Purple & Orange, Oh,
my!" is all done and the binding
will be in a purple. What fun to
work with these colors :)
|I keep thinking I'm done with this
block for now and then another
fabric combination comes to
mind! Here, I choose fabrics to
match the different colored dots
to make the diagonal zig zags,
some of which will repeat.
|"Polka-dots & Zig-Zags" is all
done and the binding will be in
the polka-dot fabric. Always
nice to work with solids - just
very different from prints!
|Time to sort through the This & That
box of leftover blocks and ideas that
didn't become a full quilt top. When
I pull these out, it's pretty
overwhelming, but, if I just start
pulling some blocks and combining
them to make some sizes that will fit
together, a quilt top begins.
|From the picture on the left to the
one on the right, I changed out a
few blocks, moved a few blocks,
added a bit, changed that wide
green spacer border on the upper
left, added spacer strips where
needed and sewed it together.
|I include "This & That" in the name
of all of the quilt tops made from
the This & That box and then I add
the name of a block, so I can find
the quilt top. Here's the basket
block this top was named for.
|"This & That with a Basket" is all
done and the binding is in a
gold, orange, brown print. This
kind of top is such fun to make!
|I think that's it for
this one.....now, to fit
|"This & That with Stars & Spinners" is all done and I think
the binding will be scrappy. The next picture shows some
details. This one turned out larger than my normal and I
had a hard time getting a picture! I hadn't planned to
make it this large, but I couldn't stop adding blocks :)
|These blocks are all from the
This & That box. I think with a
little filling in, cutting down and
making a few more blocks,
these will work together.
|The square in a square blocks from
the This & That box had madras plaids
in them, which didn't go too well with
the homespuns in the other blocks.
So, I made some new square in a
square blocks with homespuns. In the
center I cut down the log cabin block
and bordered four of the blocks to
bring them all to the same size.
|"This & That with a Bear" is all done
and the binding will be in a green.
The next picture is a close-up where
you can see the bear! That's
another eighteen blocks out of the
This & That box :)
|In this close-up you can
actually see the bear - well,
half of him anyway :)
|The blocks on the left are all from the This & That box. The top
ones are from patriotic fabrics and the bottom ones just red,
white and blue. I'm trying to decide if I want to try the top blocks
together with some blocks from the patriotic fabrics shown on
the left. All of the ones laid out on the left are four stacks. I
haven't checked my six and eight stack boxes of already
stacked fabrics to see if there are any patriotic ones in there.
|I decided to just use patriotic
fabrics. Starting to shape up :)
|Ready to start sewing these
together. I may have to
add and/or subtract as I
work on fitting things in.
|There's very little mindless sewing in this
type of quilt top. Each section is like a
different little puzzle where you need to
figure out the sizes for setting the pieces
together and then work out how the
sections will go together. I really enjoy
doing it but it does take some extra time.
|"This & That in Red, White & Blue" is
all done and the binding will be in a
navy with white stars. I think the
inner border of stacked half-hexies
looks like patriotic bunting :)
|Another bunch of blocks
from the This & That box. I
think I can add to these and
make this setting work.
|I decided to stay with traditional
looking fabrics for the backgrounds.
I worked out the large setting
triangles in the border by laying out
the striped pieced triangles and then
cutting something to fit with them! I'll
need to use a spacer strip at the
ends of the border, as you can see
at the top, but I think it will work
since it will it right in with the strip
piecing in the triangles.
|"This & That with Ohio Stars" is all done
and the binding will be in the border
fabric. I had no idea what I could do
with those original blocks I pulled from
the This & That box. I'm really happy
with the final result. Working with all of
these miscellaneous blocks is helping
my piecing skills!
|Again, from the This & That box! I think
that for a number of years I preferred to
make blocks rather than set them. Now, I
like doing both things, which is good.
Thinking about the shoo fly blocks. First, I
thought of setting them on point with just a
light plaid in the setting squares. Then I
pulled some different blocks from the box.
While I like the Drunkards path blocks, I
think I'll use them elsewhere and go for
the final super busy layout in the lower
right hand corner. I think, once I get
those set they'll work out. Now, to decide
on a background fabric.....
|"This & That Shoo Fly" is all done and the binding will be in the
lighter of the two red background fabrics. I think the Shoo Fly blocks
made an interesting inner round when set next to each other.
|I'd like to use these three blocks in the
same top, but I don't know if that will
work yet. There aren't any other
blocks in the This & That box that
seem to go with these, so I think I'll
make some blocks, probably stars, and
see what I can arrange.
|A general plan - now, to work
out how to put it together.
|Sewing together sections,
everything based on a two
and a half inch square.
|Sunday, July 16, 2017
|Sections are all sewn, now
to sew them together.
|"This & That Drunkard's Path" is all done and the binding will be in
scrappy tans. I really had fun with the background on this one!
|"This & That Churn Dash" is all done
and the binding will be in a dark purple
to match the flowers in the border
fabric. I like the way those stacked
blocks combined to form some star
designs and the lighter red in the
center blocks gives a little glow.
What looks like black on the left
side is really dark purples.
|I made some new blocks, added
to some blocks and cut down
some others, so now everything
is the same size. Now, to decide
on the setting triangles.
|"This & That with Purple Frames" is all done and the binding
will be in the purple used to frame some of the blocks. Quite
an assortment of different kinds of stacked blocks.
|These blocks are made mostly from
recycled plaids and I don't have
anything else in the This & That box to
go with them. So, I'll go to my
collection of recycled plaids and made
some more blocks.
|"This & That Plaids" is all done and
the binding will be in a red plaid, cut
on the bias. That funny mark on the
right hand border isn't in the fabric,
just in the picture :)
|I pulled the lighter blocks and put
them on the design wall to see if I
could combine any of them. I
decided on the blocks on the upper
right and sized some down. Then I
added frames to the six in the
middle. I was glad to have the pink &
white check fabric! Hopefully, better
picture coming of the colors.
|"This & That Pastel" is all done
and the binding will be in a pale
yellow. Eighteen more blocks
out of the This & That box!
|Next up....a bunch of green and
light 4.5 inch four patches. So
|I think these two blocks will make
a nice secondary pattern.
|On the right, the blocks are ready to be
sewn together. I put up the picture on
the left, with some star pieces not sewn
just to show how different the Tri Recs
star looks when the star points are dark
instead of medium, as in the green I
used. Yes, the colors on the dark star
are off, but it does show the difference :)
|"This & That with Green Stars" is all
done and the binding will be in a
green print. Love watching the
circles emerge in this design!