Anniversary Giveaway!

Last week was my 5 year blogging anniversary. It's been 5 great years getting to share my passion for quilting with all of you. It's been 5 wonderful years of hearing your feedback and encouragement. Thank you for keeping me inspired and motivated!

What better way to celebrate than to have a giveaway!


We have some black and white fat quarters, a fat quarter of my latest favourite Art Gallery Steps Above Prism print, some black and white thread and this adorable tin.

To win this giveaway, just leave a comment telling me what your favourite colour combo is these days. Followers get a bonus entry -- just leave a comment telling me how you follow (via Bloglovin', Instagram, Feedly, etc.). For another bonus entry, follow me on InstagramFacebook or Twitter and leave me a comment saying so. 

No reply bloggers, please leave your email address in your comment, otherwise I'll need to pick someone else.

This giveaway is open until Sunday, May 29th at 8 p.m. EST. The winner will be chosen via Ms. Random Number Generator and announced on May 30th. Good luck!

TGIFF! - Badges, Badges Everywhere...

Welcome to TGIFF! You know the phrase about the cobbler’s children having no shoes? Well, my kids’ feel that way when it comes to sewing Beaver/Cub/Scout badges on their uniforms or camp blankets. I am also a Beaver leader so you would think that I’d be all over sewing them on in a timely manner. Alas, they usually have to bug me to sew them on. Now, I think it’s about time my oldest starts sewing his own badges on, so we’ll be working on that.

In the meantime, all three kids have collected a surprising number of badges and crests from their Scouting and sport activities. I have a camp wrap that I sewed my crests and badges on 5 years ago. I’ve had camp blankets purchased for the boys for a few years, but have the badges made it on to the blankets? No. Quilter/leader’s children. Sigh.

Except this week, there was progress! This is Daniel’s new camp blanket.


The other day, he laid out his badges with a few guiding tips from me and I sewed them on. 


I used a zipper foot and moved my needle all the way to the right so that I could sew just along the edge of the badges. The key to not going crazy on matching thread to the different badges? Monofilament thread on the top and a matching thread to the blanket underneath. :)

He’s pretty happy with it and there’s lots of room left for more badges and crests. I’m freaking thrilled that his blanket is off my to-do list! Now just two camp blankets to go and to add on the new badges to my own wrap.

P.S. This week is my 5 year anniversary for the blog! Woo hoo! Stay tuned for a giveaway announcement this weekend...


Modern Block Monday - Layers

March's theme for Bee Sewcial was layers. Hillary (@entropyalwayswins on Instagram) wanted blocks that conveyed layers in turquoises, blues, oranges, greys and whites.

I knew what I wanted to do with one of the blocks early on. I did layers of the Fibonacci sequence on the first block, both horizontally and vertically.


The second block took a while to figure out though. In the end, I used some of the leftovers from the first block and then added more improv layers in the colour order going from warm to cool and back to warm again.


To see the blocks my beemates did, check out #BeeSewcial on Instagram. If you'd like to follow along with this bee, tag your blocks to #inspiredbybeesewcial.

Quilt Show Weekend!

It's quilt show weekend here in Ottawa. This year it's the Common Thread Quilt Show with a special room for the Ottawa Modern Quilt Guild. Woo hoo! I have four quilts in the show and hoping to get there this afternoon to look around. I'm volunteering tomorrow from 11-1 p.m. If you are in the area, stop in. You won't be disappointed!


Also, Sew Sisters Quilt Shop is having a Free shipping event this weekend for Mother's Day! Enjoy!

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TGIFF! - Separation of Church and State

Woo hoo! It's TGIFF! time again. I've got a bit of a weird naming story for the quilt I'm sharing this week.

This quilt started with the need to use up some scraps from an overflowing scrap bin. I wanted to try to use more tones and colours that aren't my favourites.

When I shared the finished top for Separation of Church and State a few weeks ago, I didn't share why it was called that because I didn't know. This was not intended to be some deep philosophical or political statement piece.

As I was playing with the layout, the expression Separation of Church and State just popped into my mind. There hadn't been a discussion with anyone or something on the news. I hadn't even gotten to the word play stage I usually try to come up with a name.

I just looked up at it and it was Separation of Church and State. It was weird. Then I looked at the top again and thought "well, maybe it looks a little like a stained glass window or some of the triangle points look like church steeples." But even I'll admit that it was a stretch.

I did add the line of Essex linen to help make the name work, but that was about it in terms of intentional design in the top to match the name.



The quilting was done with my favourite Aurifil thread (a beige colour #2847), using that great walking foot technique I learned from Healther Lair.

Here are a few close-ups:



Coming back to the story of the name. When I was burying the threads and finishing up the quilt, I was trying to help my son work on his poetry assignment from school, which was to make up three new stanzas for a poem. The poem was actually a prayer and he was losing his mind over it. As I was trying to be patient with him and his over-the-top reaction, I was secretly wishing for a little more separation between church and state.


Sometimes it just takes a while for the reason behind the name to make itself clear, I guess. ;)

Here's a view of the back where you can really see the quilting pattern.


Size: 25" by 30"






BeeSewcial - Let's Get Planning

May is my month to be Queen Bee for BeeSewcial. I've known almost from the start what I wanted to  explore with this group. I'm asking my beemates to channel their inner urban planner this month. Our theme is direction.

My inspiration is Stephen Von Worley's maps coloured by orientation. I find his maps fascinating and would love to see what we could create with fabric. I would like each of my beemates to create a couple of neighbourhoods/city areas (2 - approx. 12.5" x 12.5" blocks) or one big neighbourhood/city area (approx. 12.5" x 24.5") so we can build a city.

Like most cities, some neighbourhoods are grids, others partial grids and still others are all curves or some combination of all three. Different areas of a city are planned over time by different people, but they still work together. Applies well to a bee quilt, no?

For some additional inspiration, I some photos I took on the plane to and from California to get a feel of what different cities look like from the air. Google Maps is also great for exploring layout ideas, but feel free to make it up as I did in my test blocks below.








Some guidelines so the blocks can work together:
  • Background - medium to dark greys (no Pepper or Black). You can use one value for the background or several like I did for mine. I used greys in the Kona range from Coal to Charcoal, but it doesn't have to be Kona. 
  • For Stephen's work, roads at approx. 90 degrees to each other have the same hue. For our purposes, the colours within a neighbourhood have the same hue, but can have different values of that hue (great for using scraps). 
  • Please have at least one road leading out of your neighbourhood so I can link it to other neighbourhoods.
  • Aim for roads to be between 1/2"-ish (residential roads) to 2"-ish wide (highways). 
  • For those who would like to give our city some water, which every city or town needs - light to medium greys.
  • I'm not a fan of appliqué and would prefer pieced blocks.
Here are my test blocks:




For anyone who would like to play along, you are more than welcome to do so! Add your blocks to #inspiredbybeesewcial on Instagram. We'd love to see what you do with this challenge. 
Questions? Fire away!

Wholecloth Experiment

I've been mulling over an idea about doing a colourful wholecloth using the walking foot quilting technique I learned from Heather Lair,...