Tag Archives: bernina

Cloud9 New Block Blog Hop: Steady On {Tutorial}

My favorite colors! Flying geese! Curves! Precision delicately dancing with improv! Yessssss, this block has all of those things and I’m excited to share a detailed tutorial with you today. This new block was designed for the New Block Blog Hop sponsored by Cloud9 Fabrics and hosted by Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl, Cheryl at Meadowmist Designs, and Stephanie at Late Night Quilter. Today is day three of the hop, which means that 46 new block tutorials have already been shared, and 23 more are being shared today. Amazing!

Cloud9 Fabrics new block blog hop tutorial Steady OnI’m calling my block Steady On, which just seemed fitting for such a classic made-by-me block. Those of you who know me know that I cannot keep anything simple, and this is a perfect case in point. This block has double improv curves, twenty (20) tiny flying geese, an hourglass block, and quite a few points that should match *just* so, all in the 12 1/2″ unfinished square block. But fear not, this tutorial has detailed photos and instructions on how to make each component of the block, and breaking it down into manageable chunks makes this block come together quite smoothly (Spoiler: we can make some of the flying geese 4 at a time!). There’s something about the determined light colored geese headed bravely into the dark and improvy unknown that urges me to encourage them… Steady on, now! That same encouragement goes for you, since I would LOVE to see you tackle this block and come out victorious (tag @nightquilter and #steadyonquilt when you do!). This is going to be fun, so let’s get started!

Gather your materials:

2016 cloud9 organic cirrus solids new block blog hop

  • Fat quarter (FQ) of each of the five (5) fabrics generously provided by Cloud9: Amazon, Sky, Shadow, Lilac, and Iris.  (There will be fabric left over–enough for a second block or more depending on how frugally you cut your scraps!).
  • Clover hera marker and/or other fabric marking tool
  • fabric scissors
  • washable school glue (I use Elmers)
  • Fine glue tip (optional but helpful)
  • rotary cutter & mat
  • quilting ruler with 1/4″ and 1/8″ markings (I use Omnigrid rulers)
  • sewing machine (I have a Bernina 560)
  • thread (I use Aurifil 50wt 2600-Dove for nearly all of my piecing)

Press your fabrics and use spray starch or Flatter by Soak to help stabilize them before cutting.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorial
If you are really attune to detail, you may notice that the smallest squares and rectangles are a bit too small in this photo–you’re right, but I corrected the measurements for the tutorial! No worries. Steady on…

Then cut the following pieces from each fabric:

– (8) 1 7/8″ squares (for geese 4 at a time)
– (4) 1 1/2″ squares (for single geese)
– (4) 5 1/2″ squares (for curved quadrants)

– (1) 3 1/4″ square (for geese 4 at a time)
– (6) 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ rectangles (for single geese)
– (1) 3 1/4″ square (for hourglass block)

– (8) 1 1/2″ squares (for single geese)
– (4) 5 1/2″ squares (for curved quadrants)

– (6) 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ rectangles (for single geese)
– (2) 3 1/4″ squares (for hourglass and geese 4 at a time)

– (12) 1 1/2″ squares (for single geese)
– (4) 5 1/2″ squares (for curved quadrants)

Now, we will break down the block into manageable pieces, and make a component at a time. Let’s start with the curved quadrants!

Making Double-Curved Quadrants

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialFor this step, you will need your 5 1/2″ squares of Iris, Amazon, and Sky, washable school glue and tip, a marking pen or pencil, scissors, and an iron and pressing surface. To make the double-curved quadrants for this block, follow my tutorial on easy curved piecing using a visual layering approach and glue basting HERE.  Go ahead and read it now, I’ll wait for you. When you’ve read through it once and have a grasp on the general technique, grab three of your 5 1/2″ squares, one each of Iris, Amazon, and Sky. For this block, the Iris is the bottom layer, the Sky is the middle layer and the Shadow is the top layer.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialSince this method begins from the bottom up, start with Iris and Amazon. Mark the Amazon square 2 1/4″ up along both sides from the bottom right corner. Make sure your mark extends 1/4″ in from the edges before beginning the curve. This will be your sew line, not your cut line, so by measuring the 2 1/4″ we are ensuring our seams will match up, even though the flying geese are exact and the curves can be improv. (Note here that if you are using fabric with a right and wrong side, you want to be marking the wrong side of the fabric. With the Cloud9 Cirrus Solids that’s not important).

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialDraw an improv curve from marked point to point, or trace a perfect curve using the edge of a small plate or glass. Make sure your curve begins and ends at your marked points 2 1/4″ up from the corner.

Using the drawn line as your sew line, follow the steps in my curved piecing tutorial here to sew your first curve. Beautiful, right!?

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialNext, grab your Shadow 5 1/2″ square and mark 3 1/4″ up both sides from the bottom right corner. Again, draw your curve as desired, connecting from marked point to marked point, and using that line as the sew line.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialMake four quadrants, measuring 2 1/4″ up on the Amazon square and 3 1/4″ up on the Shadow square for two of them, and measuring 3 1/4″ up on the Amazon and 4 1/4″ up on the Shadow square for the other two. Admire your smooth curves, and set those blocks aside for later!

Making Flying Geese 4 at a Time

Next we will crank out as many flying geese as we can, using the technique of making 4 at a time found in the Reference Section of the Quilter’s Planner. I use my Quilter’s Planner daily, and it sure did save some time with this block! Here’s how:

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialPlace two 1 7/8″ Iris squares in the top right and bottom left corners of a 3 1/4″ Sky square as shown. Using your fabric marking tool of choice, draw a diagonal line from the top right corner to the bottom left corner. I love my Hera marker since it doesn’t actually mark the fabric, but makes a clear guide line.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialSew 1/4″ from either side of the drawn line. Press with a hot iron to set the seam (notice that I didn’t do this step? tsk tsk).

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialCut along the drawn line.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialPress the small Iris triangles outward, with seams pressed toward the dark fabric. Then place another 1 7/8″ Iris square in the corner of each unit, and mark a diagonal line as shown above.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialAgain, carefully sew 1/4″ from either side of the drawn line. Cut along drawn line.

Cloud9 Fabrics new block Steady On tutorialPress open, with seams toward darker fabric.

Cloud9 fabrics new block Steady On tutorialTrim to 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ and set aside.

Repeat instructions above using the remaining 1 7/8″ Iris squares and a 3 1/4″ Lilac square to make four Lilac geese with Iris corners.

Making Single Flying Geese

The remaining flying geese must be made one at a time since the corner colors are mixed up to flow into your improv curved quadrants.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onGrab your 1 1/2″ squares and 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ rectangles and lay them out to help plan which corners should be positioned on each rectangle. Use the finished flying geese above to help plan before you start sewing.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onTo make a flying geese block (or would it be flying goose?), position a 1 1/2″ square right sides facing the right top corner of a 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ rectangle. Draw a diagonal line as shown above.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onSew along the line and then trim a 1/4″ seam allowance.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onI like to get mine all paired and drawn so that I can chain piece each side.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onRepeat with the other 1 1/2″ square on the top left side of the block. Press seams open or up toward the corner.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onTime saving tip: I cut my 1/4″ seam allowances with scissors while pressing. As long as you are accurate with a pair of scissors, it takes much less time than rotary cutting, at least for me.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onSquare your flying geese to 1 1/2″ x 2 1/2″ rectangles, making sure that your goose point is a perfect 1/4″ (or slightly further) from the top edge. Set aside.

Making Center Hourglass Block

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onFinally, let’s make that center hourglass block. Grab your 3 1/4″ Lilac and Sky squares.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onPlace right sides together and mark a diagonal line. I like to pin my pieces together since we are working with such a small scale. If you’d prefer some wiggle room, you can begin with 3 1/2″ squares and trim to size when you’re finished!

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onSew 1/4″ from either side of the drawn line. Cut along the drawn line.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onPress toward darker fabric. You will have two half square triangles (HST).

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onPlace HSTs right sides together, with the Lilac half of one facing the Sky half of the other, and nesting the seams.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onDraw a diagonal line perpendicular to the existing seam line, again pinning to keep the pieces in place while you sew.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onSew 1/4″ on either side of the drawn line. Then, cut along drawn line.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onPress seams open. You will have two hourglass blocks, but will only need one for this block. Save the other one for your next Steady On block!

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onTrim to 2 1/2″ square. Set aside.

Assembling the Block

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onNow that you’ve made all of the components, it’s time to sew the block together! Arrange all of your pieces as shown above, paying careful attention the positioning of the flying geese in relation to the large and small curves on your curved quadrants. There should be two Iris flying geese corners next to small curves and three Iris flying geese corners next to large curves.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onSew the top five and bottom five groupings of geese together, and sew the center horizontal strip of geese and center hourglass block together.

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onPerfect points tip: When sewing the flying geese together, keep the piece with the goose point on top. As you’re sewing, make sure your sewing machine needle sews exactly through the “x” that marks the point of the goose, or if anything, slightly to the right (above) the point. This way you won’t lose any points!

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady oncloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onNext, sew the top left and top right curved quadrants to the top grouping of geese, pinning just after each seam that needs to match.

Press seams toward the less bulky side (toward the curved quadrants).

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onWhen aligned properly, the geese corners should flow into the curved piece perfectly–that’s why we so carefully marked our curve starting distances with our improv curves!

cloud9 fabrics new block tutorial steady onFinally, sew the top and bottom panels to the center horizontal strip, again pinning just after each important seam match. Press toward the less bulky sides (the curved quadrants), and viola! Steady on…

steady-on-quilt-block-tutorial-1I am really excited about how this block turned out, and I’m eager to play around with different color placements and curve arrangements. I’d love to see if you sew up this block, too, so please tag me @nightquilter #steadyonquilt when you do!

Thank you for visiting and I hope you found this tutorial helpful! Check out all of the other new block tutorials shared today, all of which will be combined to make one big gorgeous charity quilt:

Host: Stephanie @Late Night Quilter

Kathy @Kathys Kwilts and More
Paige @Quilted Blooms
Mary @Strip Quilts Pass it On
Allison @Woodberry Way
Seven @The Concerned Craft
Olusola @Alice Samuel’s Quilt Co.
Ann @Brown Paws Quilting
Jodie @Persimmon + Pear
Vicki @Orchid Owl Quilts
Kitty @Night Quilter <———————You’re here!
Francine @Mocha Wild Child
Shelley @The Carpenter’s Daughter who Quilts
Jayne @Twiggy and Opal
Geraldine @Living Water Quilter
Shannon @Shannon Fraser Designs
Lisa @Sunlight In Winter Quilts
Jessica @Quilty Habit
Cassandra @The (not so) Dramatic Life
Deanna @Stitches Quilting
Denise @Craft Traditions

Also, be sure to visit each host’s blog to find out how to enter to win one of three fabric bundle giveaways. The giving doesn’t stop!

Let Your Heart Shine True: A Mini Quilt Finish

let your heart shine true mini quilt giftI recently finished and gifted this mini quilt to a fellow quilting friend as part of a small private swap, and now that it has been received, I can tell you all about it! I entitled it, “Let Your Heart Shine True”, and it’s meant to be a visual representation of the fact that the goodness in your heart shines through, despite any missteps, mistakes, wrong words, or other things we personally may feel will tarnish or cloud our good intentions. It was made for Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl, who often reflects on her introverted personality and how it influences her day to day, both quilting and non. The design inception came after Yvonne posted a number of articles about the struggles of attempting social interaction as an introverted person. The articles mentioned a desire to have people understand your good intentions, even if the words or actions that emerged as a result of an uncomfortable social interaction as an introvert may have been less than smooth. I think we are all familiar with foot in mouth syndrome; at least I am!

let your heart shine true gifted mini quilt finishThis is my first attempt at a “statement quilt”, per se. My thought was that the quilt would show the large pieces on top as representing “people”, and the rippled reflection below being the public perception of the person. When mistakes are made, things are said in a not so clear way, or even just general awkward social interactions happen, those are the ripples that cause the reflection to be jarred and shaken. Yet despite the ripples and the jolted reflection, the heart remains intact and unbroken. If you lead with the heart, your good intentions ultimately must become known, no matter how many times you need to back pedal or rephrase things to clarify your meaning. I thought creating a statement quilt for Yvonne was fitting, since she has created a number of quilts as part of her Reclamation Project, which she describes as “a project series to explore discomfort in [her] life with the hope that [she] can reclaim and redefine.” I primarily create quilts as things of beauty, but I thought it would be fun to try to create one that is both beautiful and meaningful.

let your heart shine true detailThe construction of this mini quilt was a fun multi-step process. I began by needle-turn appliquéing the rounded pieces onto panels of background fabric. I cut the bottom pieces with an identical free-style rounded top, but with much longer length since I planned to cut and resew it many times. Once they were appliquéd onto the background fabric, I cut random, varied width strips from the bottom ones, off-set it enough to wobble but not extend beyond the width of the finished panel, and resewed it. Each one was cut and re-sewn six or seven times to create the rippled effect. Let me tell you–that first cut into the needle-turned mound was a bit nerve-wracking! It was another one of those times I just had to trust that the vision in my head would translate well to reality.

let your heart shine true mini quiltAfter rippling all three reflections, I squared each panel and sewed them together creating a horizon with a very narrow, approximately 1/8″ strip of solid orange fabric (Kona Persimmon, I think!). Yvonne’s favorite colors are blue and orange, which clearly influenced my fabric selection. I used some of our mutual favorite oranges from Carolyn Friedlander, and added some sketch by Timeless Treasures and an unknown solid from my early quilting days stash. I bound it in blue Mercury by Alison Glass, including a bit of framing while adding a bit from another mutually adored fabric designer.

For quilting, I knew I wanted to matchstick quilt the background, but have the lines become gradually further apart in the bottom half, similar to ripples becoming less dense the further from the source they extend. I matchstick quilted the background of the top portion with 50wt Aurifil 1320-Medium Teal. To keep my rows evenly spaced, I used a stitch length of 3.0 on my Bernina 560, and I carefully moved two stitches (with a three-stitch gap thrown in here and there for interest) between rows. For the bottom portion, I first matchstick quilted with the same 1320-Medium Teal 50wt Aurifil, but instead of making the rows two stitches apart like I did for the top portion, I increased the number of stitches by one between each row. I moved one stitch between the first and second rows, two stitches between the second and third rows, three stitches between the third and fourth rows, etc., all the way to the bottom of the mini quilt. I think at the bottom, each row was 19 or 20 stitches away from the previous row. Yes, it got a bit trickier to keep my quilting lines straight, but I eyeballed it and it turned out well. Organic lines were my goal, after all.

let your heart shine true matchstick quilting detailAfter that, the quilt begged for some more quilting, so I added random rows in yellow, gold, and orange for interest (40 wt 1135-Pale Yellow, 50 wt 5022-Mustard, and 50 wt 1154-Dusty Orange respectively). Both the top and bottom ended up pretty thoroughly matchstick quilted, but I really like the addition of the yellow, gold, and orange thread in the bottom, as well as the added interest of using a slightly heavier weight thread as the yellow. It reminds me of light reflecting off the ripples in a pond, which is perfect given the intention of the quilt.

After matchstick quilting this mini, I can certainly see why people are so drawn to dense quilting. It creates a whole new textural element to the quilt!

let your heart shine true mini quilt gift
One of my dedicated helpers. He really wanted his picture taken with this mini!
let your heart shine true mini quilt gift
My other dedicated helper, who helped by not crawling *too* far into the lake while we were photographing this quilt.

I’m really happy with the final result of this mini quilt–it pretty much looks exactly like I imagined. Yvonne is also happy with it, even though it took months for me to finally finish each part and mail it, so that makes for one happy exchange! The true joy in quilting is in the giving, and it feels really great to have been able to create a little daily visual reminder for Yvonne that as long as you lead with your heart, joy will be found.

I’m linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday, Needle and Thread Thursday, and TGIFF. I hope you have a joyful day!

Return of the Rainbow

Do you ever get to the point in a project where you are *so* close to finishing that you sort of let your mind think you already have, and it hops right over and latches onto a new project idea or three? Yeah, me too. I have at least three projects that are in their final stages yet have been put aside for the past month, while I instead started a handful of new projects. Who doesn’t love a new project?! Yesterday I decided it was time to get those nearly finished projects into the finished pile, and I pulled my favorite one to the top to start.

dropcloth color wheel embroidery sampler mini quiltRemember this? Over a month ago, I finished my first ever embroidery sampler, this Color Wheel by Rebecca Ringquist of Dropcloth. I used Aurifil 12wt thread for the first time, learning the stitches as I went, and loved it SO much when it was finished that I just couldn’t let it be actually finished. So I hatched the plan to extend the color wheel using none other than my favorite saturated rainbow: Alison Glass’s 2015 Sun Prints. Putting it aside was not out of lack of love or excitement, don’t get me wrong. I LOVE this project and it feels so good to pick it up again. I just get into spots where the ideas burst and I have to get them started so that they are real. You know what I mean… a project with fabric cut and design sketched and a few stitches invested is a real project. It’s a lot less likely it will sit stagnant in the pool of unrealized ideas once it’s been at least partially begun.

rainbow color wheel processSo back to my color wheel. I managed to match the fabrics almost exactly to the colors of the Aurifil embroidery, which is incredible. It seems like Alison Glass and Rebecca Ringquist and Alex from Aurifil must have all gotten together to design this harmonious flow with the perfect combination of design, color, thread, and fabric, it goes together that well. I wanted to be sure that the prongs of the outer color wheel aligned with the organically drawn prongs of the embroidery wheel, so I scanned my embroidery sampler and uploaded it to Inkscape, the free vector program with which I design patterns. I created larger circles, centering the embroidery, and extended the lines on the sampler to create wedges. I then printed it, cut out the wedges with scissors, and used them as templates to cut the fabric wedges, as shown in the Instagram photo above. I winged it, really, but amazingly it came together beautifully.

dropcloth color wheel rainbow quiltRight now the rainbow circle overlaps with the embroidery sampler’s edges, but don’t worry–I plan to either trim or fold the edge under so that the entire sampler is visible.dropcloth color wheel rainbow quiltIt was an exciting day, since this is the first project sewn on my new sewing machine: a Bernina 560, which I recently purchased during one of their 0% interest, 60-month payment plan offer days.  (I’ll give you a formal introduction soon, promise!)

flatter by soakI also used Flatter by Soak spray for the first time since QuiltCon, and I’m amazed I survived without it. Between the new machine sewing like a dream and the seam-relaxing Flatter spray, this circle came together without a hitch.

Now I am going to study up on circles by watching Cheryl Arkison’s class Inset and Applique Circles by Machine on Craftsy (affiliate link). It’s my first time trying a class on Craftsy, but I hear there are subtitles. I also was fortunate enough to take a class with Cheryl Arkison at QuiltCon, so I have no doubt of her depth of knowledge and skill. I’m really looking forward to trying to attach these circles!

Having never sewn a circle by machine, and perhaps only one by hand, this will be a creation filled with firsts. I’m getting awfully close to completing this beauty, though, and I’m loving every step of the way.

I’m linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for Work in Progress Wednesday.


Also, for those of you on Instagram, I’m having an awesome giveaway to celebrate passing 1,500 followers, sponsored by Aurifil, Soak, and moi (with a fat eighth bundled pulled straight from my stash favorites, basically this color wheel!). Head over, follow me @nightquilter, and tag a quilty friend to enter. Here are some sneak peeks for eye candy (Note: This giveaway is on Instagram only):

instagram giveaway bundle
Fat eighths bundle pulled from my stash favorites. Giveaway on Instagram only.
instagram giveaway bundle
Aurifil thread set and Flatter by Soak, graciously provided by Aurifil and Soak. Giveaway is on Instagram only.

GIVEAWAY! note for blog and twitter


Doe Layers of Charm Quilt & a Giveaway

When Fat Quarter Shop contacted me about quilting along with their newest shortcut quilt pattern, I immediately decided I wanted to make the quilt out of Carolyn Friedlander‘s newest fabric line Doe. Thus the seed was planted that grew into the Doe Layers of Charm Quilt.

Remember this sneak peek?

Doe Secret Quilt Peek

Well, here it is!

doe layers of charm quilt

Layers of Charm

Layers of Charm is Fat Quarter Shop’s newest Short Cut Quilt pattern, complete with a free downloadable pdf and video. The pattern uses a layer cake and charm square pack, so I used a Doe layer cake (with two cameos by Botanics) and the coordinating Kona cotton solids charm pack. When I started this quilt, Doe wasn’t yet available in the US so Robert Kaufman Fabrics was kind enough to send me what I needed in advance (Thank you!). The part of the process that took the longest was deciding on a layout that I liked. I ultimately decided on one that I feel embodies the Doe fabric line well, with the focus on low volumes and amazing texture, with just a pop of color. Piecing the 57 1/2″ x 57 1/2″ lap sized top took me only 6 hours (and I’m a meticulous, seam-ripping-until-perfect kind of sewist).

doe layers of charm quiltFor the back, I chose to sew one row from Carolyn’s Catenary pattern on an Architextures Ledger backing. The Catenary was my first time attempting needle-turn applique, and even with a time crunch, I truly savored each stitch! All three of Carolyn’s fabric lines are represented in this quilt, and I absolutely love it.

I decided to use a combination of straight-line quilting and free motion quilting, all of which I did on my domestic Bernina sewing machine.

Doe layers of charm quilt


Doe Layers of Charm quilt
Two quilting thread colors converge.

When inquiring about a coordinating Doe Aurifil thread set, Alex Veronelli from Aurifil said that there was not yet such a set, but offered to send me coordinating threads of my choice (Thank you, Alex & Aurifil!).  I chose:

  • 2783 – medium delft blue
  • 1320 – medium teal
  • 2850 – medium juniper
  • 1154 – dusty orange
  • 5022 – mustard
  • 2021 – white
  • 2026 – chalk
  • 2310 – light beige
  • 2600 – dove
  • 1246 – grey

Look at them shine (and comment below for a chance to win small spools of all these colors)!

Doe coordinating Aurifil thread set

My chosen quilting pattern left a TON of thread ends to bury (3 hours worth!) but I’m really happy with the outcome. Changing threads to coordinate with each section of the quilt really helps emphasize the varied values and textures in Carolyn’s Doe line. The Layers of Charm pattern is a great pattern that lets the fabric do the talking.

My family helped me photograph the completed quilt during one of our recent blizzards (there seems to be one every few days). We had a little bit too much fun, as you can see.

doe layers of charm quilt

doe layers of charm quiltdoe layers of charm quilt

doe layers of charm quilt

snowflakes on doe quilt

Quilt Stats

Pattern: Layers of Charm free Shortcut Quilt pattern by Fat Quarter Shop. (instructional video here)

Size: lap sized: 57 1/2″ x 57 1/2″ (pattern includes table runner, crib, lap, queen, and king sizes)

Fabric (all by Carolyn Friedlander for Robert Kaufman Fabrics):
Front: layer cake of Doe with two squares from Botanics, charm square pack of Doe coordinating Kona cottons.
Back: Architextures Ledger in Grey with Catenary pattern in Doe Droplet in Carrot on Kona Med Grey and Architextures crosshatch in Niagara
Binding: Architextures crosshatch in Navy with an accent of Poppy

Batting: 100% cotton Soft n’ Crafty batting

Thread: Aurifil 50wt in coordinating colors: 2783 – medium delft blue, 1320 – medium teal, 2850 – medium juniper, 1154 – dusty orange, 5022 – mustard, 2021 – white, 2026 – chalk, 2310 – light beige, 2600 – dove, and 1246 – grey

Piecing the top: 6 hours
Piecing the back: 4 hours
Squaring, layering, and basting: 45 min
Quilting: 7 hrs 45 min
Finishing (thread burying): 3 hours
Binding: 1 hr 30 min
Total: Approx. 23 hours

While I always seem to take the long road, this quilt could easily be whipped up in a weekend (or a day, if you’re quick). I am already thinking of making a baby-sized version with all black and white (heavy on the black) 10-squares and a bright pop of color solid charm pack.

Now, for a giveaway!

To celebrate the launch of the Layers of Charm pattern, I’m hosting a giveaway. One lucky winner will win a layer cake (ten-square) of Doe by Carolyn Friedlander (thanks to the Fat Quarter Shop) and a set of small spools of coordinating Aurifil threads* (thanks to Aurifil). You can enter by leaving two comments:

  1. What would you make with your winnings?
  2. If you follow me, Night Quilter, let me know how–or visit my right toolbar to follow me if you don’t already, then tell me how! (e-mail, WordPress, Bloglovin’, Instagram, Twitter, Craftsy)

The giveaway will be open until Monday, February 16th 12noon EST. I’ll select one winner randomly from the comments below. Good luck!

doe fabric and aurifil giveaway

*Note: The coordinating Aurifil thread set is not an “official” Doe coordinating set. I personally chose ten colors that I feel compliment and coordinate with the Doe fabric line.

After entering the giveaway, head over to the Fat Quarter Shop’s blog the Jolly Jabber to see the other version of this quilt in the blog hop. Meanwhile, we’ll be snuggling in this lovely Doe quilt.

snuggling in the finished quilt

Maine Quilt Shop Hop 2014: Bangor Day

2014-04-17 10.55.42This morning, my friend Emily and I decided to tackle two more local quilt shops with our rambunctious two-year old sons. Little did we know, today was to be one of the most rambunctious days yet! Neither of the boys wanted to have anything to do with the quilt shops, so we did not get to look around and chat nearly as much as we would have liked to. I also apologize in advance for the somewhat blurry photos. Much of the time, I was wearing my son on my back in the Ergo, which does not contribute well to a steady arm. Both shops were gorgeous and filled with beautiful traditional fabrics with lots of blenders and tone on tone fabrics, so I’m sure to return. Perhaps I will bring a camera and try to do some retakes.  For now, here’s my hop summary:

The Cotton Cupboard Quilt Shop  Bangor, Maine


This shop is by far the largest, most thoroughly stocked shop I’ve visited to date. It is HUGE! And has everything!! The Cotton Cupboard Quilt Shop has a large selection of Bernina sewing machines, notions galore, cutting mats of all shapes and sizes–even the rotating mats!, buttons, an extensive variety of books and patterns, kits, and they have a Block of the Month Club and offer classes. And their fabric! Cotton Cupboard has a huge stock of traditional quilting fabric, MANY gorgeous arrays of blenders and tone on tone fabrics, nature-print fabrics (think stones, grass, leaves, etc), a selection of children’s fabric, the entire Downton Abbey fabric line by Andover Fabrics (swoon!), and more. The one thing they don’t have is modern fabric. In talking to Evelyn, she said they’ve tried stocking modern fabric in the past but not enough folks were buying it to make it worth stocking.

Here’s a look around the shop:

Emily and the boys getting ready to browse.


Button station!


Downton Abbey fabric line by Andover Fabrics


This shop even had Art Quilt Boards, which I had never seen before. These would make great quick gifts, or even fabric projects for kids.

The Cotton Cupboard Quilt Shop at a Glance

Location? The Cotton Cupboard Quilt Shop is located right on Broadway in the Judson Heights Center (next to The Growing Place). While it’s not in the center of downtown, it is on a road full of shopping centers and other hot spots. For the ice cream lovers, it’s just a skip, hop, and a jump away from Giffords; that alone makes it worth the trek out Broadway to visit the quilt shop and get some ice cream! There is a parking lot with ample free parking, and the store is easy to find.

Sells? A large selection of traditional quilting fabric, notions, Bernina sewing machines, books and patterns, and offers classes and workshops. They are a Bernina dealer, with classes specifically tailored to learning to use your Bernina machine.

Modern or traditional? Traditional, since apparently the modern quilting world hasn’t made its way up to Bangor yet!

Swag? 5″ charm square of Shop Hop Theme fabric, free fat quarter, coupon, and a fun sized candy treat.

Kid friendly? Not really. This store is so large, it’s hard to keep an eye on your kids, at least when they are toddlers. Evelyn said they try to be kid friendly, and are open to kids in the shop, but she worries mostly about all the sharp objects. I agree; I worried that with the ubiquitous sewing machines and aisles and aisles of fabric that Max would bolt (pun intended! hah) and find his way to something he shouldn’t before I could catch him.

Choppin’ Cotton Bangor, Maine


Choppin’ Cotton is an adorable quilt shop right in a lovely home. Since my son was especially squirmy in this shop, I didn’t get a chance to ask whose home it is. They sell a wide range of traditional quilting cottons, notions and quilting tools, patterns and books–including some modern quilting books!–and they offer workshops as well. I loved the ambiance of the shop, even if it wasn’t especially toddler friendly. I am eager to go back someday sans kids so that I can truly browse.

Here’s a look around the adorable shop:

Walk right in through the front porch and into the main hall. Admire the crystal chandelier.
Walk right in through the front porch and into the main hall. Admire the crystal chandelier.
Some of their books, including some Modern Quilting options!
Some of their books, including some Modern Quilting options!
Colorful blenders... beautiful!
Colorful batiks and blenders… beautiful!
The cutting table is right in front of the mantle and fireplace!
The cutting table is right in front of the mantle and fireplace!
Colorful zippers
Colorful zippers

2014-04-17 11.42.42The shop sported a homey quilting decor with many signs that made me smile, mostly related to never having too much fabric. “Your husband called; he said buy whatever you want.” “To quilt or not to quilt: What a silly question!” and similar signs. While looking around, I often would pause on a sign and have a good chuckle. I also appreciated the reminder behind the check out counter: “I have a difficult time remembering my Grandchildren’s name, so please remind me of yours.” Being in a home with the kitchen behind a curtain just beyond the entry, next to a staircase leading up to living quarters, paired with the homey signs and decor and friendly conversation made this shop especially relaxed and welcoming. I’m looking forward to going back the next time I have a free moment in Bangor.

Choppin’ Cotton at a Glance

Location? Located on High Street, right off of Hammond Street, Choppin’ Cotton is walkable from downtown Bangor as long as you aren’t afraid of a good hill. Since it’s in an actual home, it’s on a residential street with street parking. I did not notice whether there is additional parking, but there were plenty of free street parking spots.

Sells? Traditional quilting fabric, notions, books and patterns. According to their website, they specialize in Alto’s QuiltCut2 quilting tool systems.

Modern or traditional? Traditional, but with Modern Quilting books available.

Swag? 5″ charm square of Shop Hop Theme fabric, a Tooltron Fine Sewing Brush, and a fun size candy snack.

Kid friendly? No. Because the shop is in a house, there is less open space, and multiple rooms into and out of which kids can run and dart to find trouble. Eloise was very friendly and understanding about our fussing kids, but I still felt that tell-tale rush of blood that triggers the fight-or-flight reaction when Max was especially fussy.


In writing these, especially on an wildly rambunctious day like today, I realize that bringing a toddler into a quilt shop is rarely a great idea. Sometimes, though, it is the only option.  Having a “safe” corner with a pouf and a box of books and toys really makes or breaks a successful fabric shopping trip on those days.  So who’s going to be the genius who opens a quilt shop with an attached playroom or ball pit?! That would be heaven!

You can follow my quilt shop hopping real-time by following @nightquilter on Twitter #maineshophop2014