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Scrap Quilting, Tips


Have you ever thought that there must be something that could be done with the half-square triangles that are left over after trimming flying geese.  Well I finally have completed a project that I think turned out pretty well.

If you ever forget to hold both top and bobbin threads when starting to sew a seam with your machine,  you may very end up with sewing machine ‘vomit’ on the bottom fabric.  Yuk!  I sometimes use a leader fabric (a fabric scrap at the beginning and end of the block I am sewing.)  So why not use these leftovers for the leader block?

I now have started a collection of scrap triangles.  Many of my fellow quilters have been giving me their scraps.  (Lucky me!)  

What to do with them?  I like the look of a scrappy quit that looks what I call ‘scrappy coordinated’.  An internet search turned up a plethora of half-square triangle block quilts.  A few sites are:

Churn Dash Blocks

I decided on making a churn dash quilt using the discarded half square triangles from a quilt that a friend is making for me.  What a find this turned out to be!

Finished Quilt


I got so caught up in the process that I had to make the backing scrappy too.  The result a reversible quilt.

Quilt Back


What a find!



There is always time to quilt!
RVing, Travel quilting

Now This is Camping!!!


We have finally replaced our travel trailer and took it on its maiden voyage last weekend!

Now this is really my idea of camping.  I love to set up my sewing machine in the campground, outside – it’s quite a conversation starter.


We decided to really make this camper our own with some of my quilts and Tom’s pictures.



Since it’s so late in the season, we only have plans to take the camper out two more times this year: a trip to Seneca Lake next month and down south during the Christmas holiday to visit friends and family.  Of course we may have to plan another trip if Mother Nature decides  to extend the season.  Who would have thought that the temperatures would be near 90 the last week of September in Upstate NY and that we’d be running the air conditioner.

I definitely will have hand quilting projects to bring with me!

There is always time to quilt!
Quilt Backings, Quilting and the Internet, Quilting tools, Scrap Quilting

Quilt Backing – The Easy Way

Having shied away from using pieced and directional fabrics for quilt backings for a number of years, I finally decided it was time to test ‘new waters.’  So off to my most easily accessible source I went – the internet. (Not sure how we managed without this immediate source of information.  I remember doing research in school at the library with  a supply of index cards, etc.  – but that’s another story – and certainly is dating myself).

I found a post on Sylvia’s Stitches that made the process easy:

  •  I put some permanent placement marks on my cutting table so I can easily place skewers in the appropriate spot whenever I am sandwiching a quilt.

  • Using painter’s tape, secure skewers to table.
  • Press the backing, batting and top length-wise and width-wise to find the center.
  • Lay the backing on your table and line up the center with the skewers.  You can line up the center of the fabric easily as you feel the skewers on your table.  Repeat with batting and quilt top.
  • Pin or spray baste your quilt for a perfectly aligned sandwich!

How easy is that!

There is always time to quilt!
Quilt Retreat, Quilting with Friends

What’s better than being able to quilt on a rainy day……?

It’s quilting at a B&B with friends on a rainy day.  Spring is on its way but last weekend turned out to be foggy, damp and dreary.  Cold enough to have some snow showers.  (Just Mother Nature’s way of letting us know who really is in charge.)   We’re ready for Spring , Mother Nature!!!!1

However, I spent it in the best way possible – at a delightful weekend quilting retreat with friends at an Upstate B&B.  Bridal Creek is located in Hamilton NY, the home of Colgate University.

This country home not only boasts wonderful meals, a beautiful homey atmosphere, but its hostess (Barb Hipsley) provides an exceptional quilting area for small groups.


The quilt area has 5 design walls, Ott lights, multiple tables that can be rearranged easily along with the normal cutting and ironing stations.  Barb sewed with us as well and joined us in the delicious meals she prepared.   Her attention to detail, making sure that we had everything we needed, made our stay more than memorable.

We are definitely  going back next year!

Normally quilt retreats are rewarding just because we get to quilt all day without interruption and have a wonderful time socializing with fellow quilters. Barb’s welcoming made the experience even better.

I was able to finish all the blocks and assemble the rows of my Year of Seasons quilt, one of my UFO’s for our guild’s challenge. 

Bridal Creek has all the amenities that you expect during your stay at a B&B – and as an extra bonus, Barb provides an atmosphere that makes for a perfect quilt retreat.

There is always time to quilt!
Half-Square Triangles, Quilt Musings

What’s in a Name?

I’m sure that you’ve all come across the multiple names that the same quilt block may have.  How did that happen?  It seems that as quilt blocks were exchanged among early quilters, the quilters  were likely to change the block name to one that seemed more appropriate to themselves.  In addition they may have altered the block a bit to more reflect their personal tastes.

This bluework quilt  is made up of embroidered and pieced blocks.  bluework 014The pattern notes that the pieced block is known by the following names:  Monkey Wrench, Hole in the Barn Door, Churn Dash, Love Knott, Lincoln’s Platform,  and Sherman’s March.

I did a bit of research on the web:  Monkey wrench, Hole in the Barn Door and Churn Dash seem to be the same as the blocks in this quilt.  There are many variations of the same block.   Among the many are:

  • Lincoln’s Platform  and Sherman’s March – from Marti Mitchell
  • Old Mill Design Hens and Chickens –
  • Shoo Fly –, and
  • Churn Dash – from Quilting in America

Monkey Wrench  – this block is said to have alerted slaves to gather tools that they might need on their journey north to freedom.


Churn Dash – refers to the churn dasher used to turn milk into butter.  This block has been in continuous use in South Carolina for more than 150 years.


Hole in the Barn Door    – The difference in this block and the Churn Dash is that the block is in a 2:1:2  rather than 2:2:2 format. (source: blogspot  The Hole in the Barn Door)

Hole in the Barn Door Button Escape designed by with Embellishments from Button Mad
















There is always time to quilt!