Posted on

Making it Fun Quilt – Spring Quilt Market 2018

Spring Quilt Market Quilt for Michael Miller

Guys!!!  I’m so excited to finally be able to share my project for the Michael Miller Spring Quilt Market booth.  They sent me fat quarters of their new has dot blenders and their marbled fabrics, along with some coordinating Cotton Couture solids and told me to make something fun and rainbow-y!  Is that a dream assignment, or what??  I narrowed it down to 48 unique fabrics that I wanted to use in the quilt, and lined them up:

Spring Quilt market
Holy cow!!! 48 different fabrics!

I numbered them and then numbered the design I had mocked up in EQ8, but it was starting to get a little crazy.  I ended up having to make a smaller swatch card because some of the fabrics were so similar in color and shade that I was starting to go cross-eyed flipping through that stack.

Spring Quilt Market
Swatch Card

I very rarely make swatch cards, but I found it to be very necessary with this quilt.  I designed a foundation paper piecing block in EQ8 and then rotated it slightly to complete the design.  The piecing went really quickly and I just needed to double check that I had the correct fabric for each block before I started sewing.  I’ll admit, there was a good amount of seam ripping to be had with this one!

FPP
Foundation Paper Pieced Blocks stacked and ready to go!

I used my new Daylight Company light box to help with the foundation paper piecing, and I really love how thin and lightweight the unit is.  I had a very bulky, cumbersome light box in the past and recently upgraded to this one.  It’s been such a nice treat to have one that doesn’t take up all of my cutting mat.  I also used Adobe Illustrator to help design the applique text in the right size and fonts, then tiled the pages to make a huge pattern.  I hand cut each letter and symbol out, then used the paper as a template to trace onto the white fabric for the applique.  I used Misty Fuse on the backside of the white Cotton Couture and then cut out each letter.  It was pretty time and labor intensive, but I love how it turned out.

My EQ layout compared to the quilt top, prior to adding applique
My EQ layout compared to the quilt top, prior to adding applique

I did come up with a slight problem in getting the applique on straight, centered, and spaced equally.  Usually, I would just use a big window and tape the quilt in place or trace where the letters needed to be, but I decided to buy a cheap portable projector and project the original applique design onto the quilt while it hung, and then I positioned the letters in place with a small amount of glue from an Elmer’s glue stick.  Once they were in position, I lightly fused them into place and then took the quilt top to my Janome MC9400 to complete the applique blanket stitching around each individual letter (that took about a day and a half!).

projector
Using the portable projector to project my applique design onto the quilt

Once I finished the applique, it was time to throw it on the longarm for quilting.  I chose just a single layer of Quilter’s Dream Wool to maximize the quilting texture and also keep it fairly lightweight.  Then I quilted some straight diagonal lines with rulers to finish it off.  I opted to not bind the quilt traditionally, but I faced it to not take away from the overall punch of the quilt, and keep the focus on the applique.  I really loved making this quilt and loved the new fabrics being released by Michael Miller Fabrics for Spring Quilt Market 2018.  I can’t wait to get my hands on more of that fabric!

Spring Quilt Market Quilt for Michael Miller
Spring Quilt Market Quilt for Michael Miller
Posted on

Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt FREE PATTERN

Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt

Who wants a free Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt Pattern?  Well today is your lucky day!!!

You have to check out this adorable fabric line Michael Miller Fabrics just released. The line is called Ice Cream, You Scream and the colors are everything!  Also, there’s this border print that is just dying to be put in a quilt (or made into a little girl’s skirt!!), and nearly makes me swoon!  I got a chance to get my hands on this fabric to design a quilt for the release, and I’m not gonna lie…I spent a few hours just playing with the fabric and coordinating Cotton Couture.  It features sweet ice cream cones, sundaes, and the best stripes.  It reminded me of the 4th of July and ice cream socials and everything pure in the world.  The best part is, Michael Miller Fabrics is offering this pattern as a freebie–you can get your own PDF pattern download from their website.

Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt
Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt – Picture from Michael Miller Fabrics website

The pattern is for “confident beginners”, which just means you need a general knowledge of foundation paper piecing and fussy cutting.  I fussy cut the border pieces so the ice cream sundaes were centered along the center of the borders, and the cornerstones in the border were fussy cut to showcase the cute little ice cream phrases on the fabric.

I had a blast designing and piecing the quilt.  I had even more fun quilting it!  I used Glide thread (from Hab+Dash) and Quilter’s Dream batting in the quilt.  I used a few different colors of thread and matched them to the different fabrics.  Most of the quilting was handguided free motion quilting, with the assistance of straight rulers for the grids.

Ice cream cone
Ice Cream Cone Quilting
Cornerstone block quilting

I’d love to see what you do with the pattern–the foundation paper piecing blocks are pretty quick to sew up.  Just remember to shorten your stitch length (I like to use 1.5) so the paper is perforated enough to tear away easily and print your paper piecing templates at 100%.  Then add your sashing and borders and voila!  Don’t forget to grab your free copy, and check out the pattern (pictured below).  Happy sewing!!!

Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt
Ice Cream, You Scream Quilt
Posted on

Gems in the Night Sky Quilt (Dear Jane-ISH Quilt)

I played with the quilt design for the Gems in the Night Sky Quilt in EQ7 for probably a week straight before I had my final layout the way I wanted it.  I changed the background fabric, moved blocks around, completely deleted blocks, changed color arrangement, the list goes on and on.  It’s funny how after you’re done with something, all the time you spent on it just kind of vanishes, and you don’t think about the labor of love you put into it.  


This quilt.  All the hearts.  I had the awesome chance to design and make this quilt for Janome’s brand new machine launch–the 9400.  I’m not going to lie, this quilt took FOREVER.  But packing it in a shipping box and saying goodbye forever was nearly as difficult as giving away your first born. 


And then I saw the picture of it on the Janome website once the machine was released, and it was like seeing photos of a long lost friend.  And I might have squealed out loud at the top of my lungs 🙂


So there were 81 blocks- with 9 different block constructions.  At first glance it kind of looks like someone took a Dear Jane quilt and dumped a bucket of modern over it (which is fine with me!), but if you look a little closer, you will see the blocks are just made with alternating colors and arranged in a way that it deceives you into thinking there are a lot of different blocks in this quilt.  


This was pieced with the Michael Miller Cotton Couture bundle that’s available at Janome dealers, and the background fabric is Anna Maria Horner’s True colors- filigree in dusk.  I think the combination is just dreamy.  


Sometimes I love the backs of quilts more than the front.  I like to press my seams open to eliminate a lot of bulk when I quilt.  


And then it was quilted with Stitch in the ditch around the bright colors and heavily quilted on all of the AMH fabric.  I had to keep this a secret for so long, that I nearly forgot about it once the machine was finally released.  So I’m finally able to share and show my little labor of love.  
Posted on

Crayon Box! New free quilt pattern for Janome

I’m crazy about quilting, but I’m also really crazy about modern quilting.  The colors, the patterns, the newness of it all just makes me love everything about it!  Luckily, I got to create something with the curated Michael Miller Cotton Couture bundle available at local Janome dealers.  It’s bright, cheerful, and has the awesomely saturated colors you can’t get anywhere but from Michael Miller Fabrics (and no, they aren’t paying me to say that).  Cotton couture is my favorite solid to work with right now, because it sews like BUTTER.  I’ve even used it in some garments and loved the result.  So if you’re dying to see it, here’s “Crayon Box”:

Crayon Box by Joanna Marsh

You can find the full tutorial on the Janome website HERE and download the pattern for free!  I had a blast creating this and playing with the colors!  Use the hashtag #thecrayonboxquilt to share your creation.  


There’s also a fun tutorial on how to do scrappy bindings in the free quilt pattern, just like in the picture below (and I just couldn’t resist this Loominous Anna Maria Horner print for my backing):
Scrappy binding tutorial
And for quilting ideas, I did a super fun swirly motif.
Swirly quilting
So run and grab your free pattern and get sewing today 🙂