Monday, March 18, 2019

Is it Spring Yet?

Fluffy Bunny Tea Towel
My snowmen around my house are starting to look a little out of place.  I'm starved for some color...splashes of spring here and there.  The problem is, I lack motivation to dig the bins out of my crawl space to make the big switch...

So I'm cheating a bit, I've pulled out my bunny tea towels and put them up in my kitchen.  Ahhhh pretty colors, even though there's still snow outside, I can smile at the cute bunnies in my kitchen. These designs are a couple of my first ones, I still love them!

Mr. Cottontail Applique Design on a tea towel...

Mrs. Cottontail
You can add my bunnies to your home too!  All of my patterns are available at Etsy  I have both PDF's and packaged patterns. 

 Happy quilting!
Cindy and Belvedere

Fluffy Bunny Table Runner 
finished size 17" x 38"

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Happy Worldwide Quilting Day! What are you doing today? I plan on spending the day with my quilt guild friends at our annual quilt show. It'll be a super fun day visiting and talking with others about our love of quilting. Let me show you the cute raffle items I put together for the raffle table.... 
These would be super fun to make for your friends for their  birthdays or an extra sweet treat for a quilt retreat...
I made some sweet mug rugs and then filled some coordinating mugs with some yummy chocolate... then placed the mug rugs on a piece of cardboard cut to the shape of the mug rug to give it some stability. Then I wrap them up with clear plastic. I used some 'Fat Quarter Ribbon' I had saved after using the fabric. I just can't throw it out, so I save it and it was perfect for this!

The Snowman Ugly Sweater Mug Rug is my favorite. It's gonna be hard to give this one away but I'm sure it will find a great home.

Freezy Mug Rug... isn't it adorable.

Love Bug Mug Rug ~ it's bright and springy!

Going Batty Mug Rug with a black mug filled with chocolates!

 Then I hope to spend some time in my studio doing some fun sewing! Well, at least after I get back from my quilt guild meeting I will. You see I have a day full of fun quilty plans and I hope that you do too! Won't it be fun to know that you aren't the only one today doing some stitching or something related to quilting today? Call your quilty friends and plan a fun day! Go for coffee and then go and visit a few of your favorite quilt shops! Or plan a quilt retreat day at your home, ask your quilty friends to bring their favorite snacks to share and a project, set up a couple tables and plug in those power strips and you are set for a great day full of friendship and laughter! 

Now I'm off, I've got a quilty fun packed day!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Cindy and Belvedere

Friday, March 15, 2019

Hippity Hop!

Well, you can't have Easter without some cute bunnies. So I made up a really cute bunny mug rug for you. This pattern is super quick and easy. I whipped these up last weekend, the same time I was making my little chickens.
I like to use the embroidery stitches on my machine to make the
bunny's eyes and whiskers.

I made up a few in different colors, using fabric from
my fabric stash.
This fun pattern can be found on Etsy as instant downloadable PDF's. There's still time to whip a couple of these up for Easter! Pair it with a cute mug, candle or bag of candy and you have an adorable hostess gift!

Happy quilting,
Cindy and Belvedere

Friday, March 1, 2019

March's Block ~ Tulips
Happy March everyone! The March block for Garden Sunshine is all ready. I have been enjoying seeing everyone's blocks from last month! This month's block is a sweet block that mixes flying geese with an applique tulip. We are just dying for spring to arrive here in Minnesota so even though winter is still hanging on, as least we can work on a springtime block. This month is a pretty easy month, just one block!  I have fabric kits available in my Etsy shop. (Just in case you need some fabrics) They are on sale right now.  I also have yardage of some 1930's prints if you need to add to your stash. For those of you just joining this month.
 The monthly FREE pattern will be available on my website. I have a special 2019 BOM section on my website. Each month the FREE pattern will be posted. But as soon as the new section or block is out the old block pattern will no longer be a freebie. But it will still be available for a small fee on my website or in my Etsy shop. If you want to share you finished blocks, feel free to post them on Facebook Group (Quilt Doodle Designs Garden Sunshine BOM 2019) and tag me or post them on Instagram tag Quilt Doodle Designs. I love to see everyone's progress as we stitch along together. 
Let me show you how I made this month's block. First, following the directions cut out all of the block pieces... 

Layer the 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" square on the 3 1/2" x 6 1/2" rectangle, right sides together and sew corner to corner on the 3 1/2" square.

Trim 1/4" beyond the stitching line.


Repeat on the other side of the rectangle.

Sew the four flying geese rectangles together.

Then with right sides together, stitch the cream 6 1/2" x 12 1/2" rectangle to the flying geese rectangle sewing along the long side. Press.
Trace the tulip pieces onto heat n bond. Iron onto the back side of the fabric.

Cut all of the shapes out.

Following the Pattern Placement sheet, arrange the pieces following the picture.

Using a buttonhole stitch, sew along all of the edges with dark brown thread.

~ Tulips ~

Don't like applique? The block can be embroidered!

This month's block embroidered... it's sweet. Very nostalgic, something I would see at grandma's house.

This month's block goes together pretty quickly, gives you time to work on another project. Or if you're like me, I'm making two of these quilts, one applique and one that is embroidered! Hope you are having a great day, remember Februarys block is no longer FREE. It can be found in my ETSY shop and also on the Quilt Doodle Website for a small fee. To get this month's block, head on over to Quilt Doodle Designs... remember this block is only available this month FREE PDF download. 

Happy Quilting!
Cindy and Belvedere

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Bulls Eye!

Sometimes it just feels good to grab fabric out of your stash and just start stacking and wacking away at it. It's a great stress reliver. Sometimes I just need a mindless sewing project, no formulas, no color palette, no idea what size I'm making. Just when I'm done, I'm done. Have you ever sewn that way? I have a tendency to stitch like this when I need a break...

 I was introduced to the bullseye quilt at a friend's retreat open sew day. My mom and I go twice a year and visit the Kasson Quilters. Well I was intrigued when shown a bullseye quilt during show and tell. Why have I never seen one before. What? No real measuring, just rough cut 8", 6" and 4" circles and layer and sew them onto a fabric square. Cut them apart and sew the squares back together again?! Leave the raw edges?! OMG how wonderful, making circles with no, I mean NO curved piecing.... I'm in! So when I got home from my quilting weekend with mom, I dove into my stash and pulled out as many stray fat quarters, scrap, ugly, odd colored pieces of fabric I knew I would never use again and started cutting away. I then grabbed every piece of cream, white or tan piece of fabric I could find, leftovers from quilts and backings and cut a bunch of 10 1/2" squares and then sewed away, stacking circles on squares, trimming away excess fabric as I stitched along. This is an awesome stash buster! I started out thinking I would make a lap sized quilt but had so much fun that this quilt is turning out to be a bit bigger than that!
Rough cut 4", 6" and 8" circles, they don't have to be perfect.

I started out with 10 1/2" light colored squares. First I top stitched the large circle in place. Trimmed away the excess fabric on the back. Then topped stitched the 4"circle in place. Trimmed away that excess fabric on the back. Lastly, I stitched the 4" circle in place. I did not trim away the excess, but you can if you want to. A also didn't fret about perfectly centering the circles, I just eyeballed it.

Then cut the block in half both directions to form four smaller squares.

Then have fun mixing up the bullseyes!

Sew the blocks together.

I totally got carried away and had a blast making these blocks! They are addicting!

Sew the blocks together.... 

And Voila! A beautiful quilt top... 

This is a great way to use up some of your fabric stash. I am totally in love with this quilt. It used up my ugly, forgotten, odd colored fabric fat quarters and scraps I had and turned them into an absolutely beautiful quilt top. My quilt top is nine by eight blocks, with four blocks left over for a table topper. I'm going to use the table topper to try out how I want to free motion quilt the quilt top together. This would also be a great pattern for using fabric that you've inherited or to make a 'memory' quilt using shirts etc.  I've seen so many different versions of this quilt on Pinterest, so many fun layouts and possibilities! 

Happy quilting,
Cindy and Belvedere

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Plaids in Quilting

Plaids.... I love plaids, always have. So when I designed the Snowman Snow Globe quilt I was giddy to work with plaids. Marcus Fabrics Primo Plaids are so yummy to work with. They are soft and such rich beautiful colors, a joy to work with. 

While working on the Snowman Snow Globe design, I did not bother to match plaids. If you learned how to sew garments before learning to quilt, you paid very close attention to matching plaids and stripes when sewing. I remember lining up plaids while cutting out shirts or skirt patterns when I would sew clothes. I still do when I sew blouses for myself. But when working on a quilt, I throw that rule right out the window! I know that this goes against anything you may have learned but on a quilt, especially when piecing small blocks, it's insane to match those lines. Add a piece that's cut on a diagonal and spin it around in a block and you might as well check yourself into the, nice place with the padded walls. 

I find that the unmatched lines add interest and charm to a quilt. Remember when quilting was a necessity and not a hobby, there was little attention paid to matching a plaid. Or having all your 'blue', 'red' or whatever your main color fabric was come from the same bolt of fabric. 

 I love how the unmatched plaids add charm to the Snowman Snow Globe quilt. Remember, when you stand back and look at the quilt, it's consistent in appearance. So don't fret about plaids in your quilt blocks. Have fun and create!

Now, let me throw a curveball.... I do match the plaids when I cut strips for a border or try to cut a continuous piece for a border. Especially if the fabric has a pronounced stripe or plaid to it.

I hope this helps you not shy away from working with plaids in a quilt, any quilt. Treat the fabric as a solid 'color' not as a plaid or stripe. When cutting, rotary cut your fabric as you would normally do for a quilt.

Happy quilting!
Cindy and Belvedere

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Saturday, February 16, 2019

National Embroidery Month

Happy National Embroidery Month! It seems quite fitting for the month of February, especially in Minnesota. It has been cold and snowy here all month. Since Punxsutawney Phil declared an early spring, Minnesota has been in revolt! I have been enjoying afternoon's stitching by the fireplace with Belvedere curled up next to me. While getting my Snow Globe quilt ready to be shipped off to the photographer for Marcus Fabrics,  I stitched up a special label. While I was doing this I thought that this extra little detail adds a lot of charm to a finished quilt and it's so easy to do but quite often overlooked. 
I used a basic back stitch, running stitch and French knots for the snowman's eyes and buttons.  Many of these stitches I learned when I was a young girl. Mom taught me how to embroider. I remember her pulling out one of her hoops and showing me where she kept her floss. I don't remember what my first project was but I'm guessing it was a flour sack towel or pillowcase.

I then used my sewing machine's lettering function to sign names, add dates etc.

So included with the main Snowman Snow Globe panel from Marcus Fabrics are three smaller designs that can be used as mug rugs or as a label for the back of your quilt! They can be left as is or  you can use the design lines as a guide for embroidery. You can either embroider the whole design or just highlight certain elements in the design.

Happy stitching!
Cindy and Belvedere