Dresden Plates, Finishing up a quilt project, Hot Tips, My Life, New Moda Fabric Collection, Quilt Retreats

Closing In On The New Hope, Tiny Dresden Petal Finish Line

Last we were together I was up to my eyeballs in these.

Aren’t the little piles of alligator teeth too cute?

(easily amused, yes I know…)

With a little help from my favorite vices…

I was able to complete all of the half Tiny Dresden plates from the 1,600+ petals!

This is all of them sewn;

the extra petals set aside for another project down the road.

The little rows just make me smile!

(again, easily amused, yes I know…)

I was able to make 6 half Tiny Dresden plates from each of the 40 jelly roll strips

of Jo Morton’s New Hope by Moda Fabrics.

During our annual retreat to local quilt shop, Rosemary’s,

I got to work making blocks from the half Tiny Dresden plates for my next quilt.

This is my work space all set up & ready to sew.

My cute little Dritz Mighty Steam Iron showed up just in time to travel with me.

What a great find!

It’s the perfect little Dresden plate iron!!!

It’s extremely light-weight & just the right size for pressing my little plates.

I wish I’d known about them sooner!

I was so impressed that I’m now carrying them on my website for you to purchase here.

Don’t let the small size fool you.

It gets super hot!

It’s great for pressing small half-square triangles too.

I also like it for pressing block parts.

Choosing the center circle fabrics is a bit like choosing which Barbie shoes should complete her ensemble, lol…

Love, love, love each step!

Can’t wait to show you the finished quilt,

but that will have to wait for another day.

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

 

 

 

Dresden Plates, My Life

Petal Work Progress

As of this morning, this is the progress that I’ve made

since showing you the 1,600+ cut petals

made with the New Hope Fabric by Jo Morton for Moda Fabrics.

 

There are 6 half Tiny Dresden plates in each stack,

48, half Tiny Dresden plates in all.

To keep the strings of petals tangle-free & wrinkle-free,

I’ve had Betsy holding them.

She’s very good at her job!

Each string started out as 4 jelly roll strips that I cut into the 41 petals each (160+/-).

This is a VERY busy corner of my room, eh???

This morning, I pulled another string from its resting spot.

See  how wrinkle-free they still are?

It makes them much nicer to work with when they’re not wrinkled or tangled.

Anything to make the task less annoying is what I’m all about!

A while back I started wondering why I still cut the strings apart with scissors… no more!

It’s much quicker to cut them apart with my rotary cutter (of course!).

I cut off about a dozen at a time

and trim the seam allowance with my rotary cutter, duh!

Why didn’t I do this earlier?

I don’t think I’m lazy,

I just like to do things the quickest

& least annoying way possible!

Once trimmed, the petals are tossed into one of many cutlery trays.

This keeps the petals from escaping to oblivion when I need to move them to the ironing board in the next step.

Next, I cut off another dozen or so petals from the string

and so on, and so on… until the sting of petals is gone.

All ready for the next step!

Now I must go press, turn, press again, then sew.

A great job for a cold, dreary day.

I think I’ll go pick out a movie to keep me company.

It will make this task more enjoyable.

What are you doing on this chilly day?

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

Dresden Plates, My Life, New ideas, New Moda Fabric Collection, New tiny Dresden plate quilts

Cutting Tiny Dresden Petals from Jelly Roll Strips

I did it!

I cut my entire New Hope jelly roll by Jo Morton into Tiny Dresden petals.

But, before I started cutting I was wondering…

since I only need a 2″ strip for the Tiny Dresden petals & a jelly roll strip is 2 1/2″,

could I get more petals from each strip by not first trimming it to 2″???

So, I laid out a bunch of my Tiny Dresden Templates on a strip side by side as if I had trimmed the strip to 2″.

Then I laid out a bunch more of my Tiny Dresden Templates on another strip, staggering them to the edges of the strip.

Guess what?

I can get 5 more petals from each strip if I slide the template to the opposite edge of the strip as I cut!

Multiply that by 40 strips… 36 petals x 40 strips = 1,440 or

compared to 41 petals x 40 strips = 1,640.

That’s 200 more petals from the same amount of jelly roll strips!

That’s 16.6 more Tiny Dresden plates,

or 33.3 more half Tiny Dresden plates!

So, I stacked up 4 different color fabric jelly roll strips and started cutting.

After I cut a few I decided my 60 mm cutter might work even better than my 45 mm & I was right.

Here’s how I did it:

I lined up the template at the edge of the selvage and sliced it off the strip.

Then I cut along the top of the template.

Then I cut along the other side of the template.

I then rotated the template to the opposite edge of the jelly roll strip.

Then sliced it off the strip.

Then I cut along the top of the template.

Then I continued to rotate the template down the strip.

When I got to the end of the strips I opened the folds and stacked what was left of each strip and usually cut one more of each fabric. A few of the fabric strips were not long enough to cut one more petal, but the majority of them were long enough.

Voila!

A jelly roll worth of Tiny Dresden petals.

Now I’ve really got my work cut out for me, lol!!!

A great way to spend a super cold January day.

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

 

Dresden Plates, My Life, New quilting book, Quilt Market

Fall Quilt Market 2017 Recap

We’re back from Fall Quilt Market and Quilt Festival

and most of my catch-up work is complete, whew!!!

What a busy, tiring and fun trip.

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It took most of our kitchen to hold all the “stuff” that I packed into the van…

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Everything was labeled & packed tight for the 15 hour drive.

Nothing worse than listening to things rattle for hours on end.

Ask me how I know!

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My super booth helpers (market slaves), Robin (Nestlings by Robin)

& Chloe & I had the booth set up in no time!

That’s a bit of an exaggeration.

It did finally get set up Friday evening after

a schoolhouse session with Pepper Cory &   Studio e Fabrics & her Designer RSVP Blocks that

Robin & I participated in, making blocks with her Peppered Cottons:

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Yes, Robin the overachiever made 2!

Then, 2 Schoolhouse sessions showing my new Tiny & Mini Dresden plate book & patterns,

and then the C&T Schoolhouse session introducing the

13 new quilts from Dresden Quilt Workshop:

Suzn+Quilts+Market+Book+signing+CT+Houston+2017

Then there were book signings introducing Dresden Quilt Workshop.

A couple of mornings before market opened,

we walked part of the show to see what else came to Houston besides Suzn Quilts.

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Here’s a look at my fav… Jo Morton’s newest line, New Hope, yum!

I’m pretty sure Jo designed this collection just for me ;)

(Spoiler alert—-You’ll be seeing a lot more of this collection!)

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Betsy Chutchian’s new collection was very pretty.

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French General’s new collection was lovely too.

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Lella Boutique also very pretty.

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Tim Holtz, always super cool!

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Jen Kingwell, WOW!

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Her newest collection, more yum!!!

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Oh, & a new book…

a little close-up in case you’re not sure what I’m pointing at, lol!

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Then there was Festival!

That will have to wait for another day.

Until then,

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

 

Dresden Plates, New ideas

I’m Making Stitches, Are You?

I know I’ve been neglectful of this blog the last few months.

Besides having 12 new patterns for spring market,

helping with my son’s wedding this past July,

going on our family’s summer vacation

and then the release of my new book,

I’ve been busy & you must have thought that I had dropped from the face of the earth.

I had not.

In fact I’ve been working A LOT!

I don’t know about you,

but this time of year I pop my head up and wonder where summer went!

I’ve been stitching.

Besides the new sampler that I’m working on with Circulus & Lollies Sweet that I showed you earlier this week,

I recently finished a new Tiny Dresden little quilt.

I used an American Jane charm pack plus a cute black dot print.

I’ve also been writing instructions for these feathered star blocks.

I designed them just the right size to have a Tiny Dresden plate appliqued in the center!

So, are you intrigued?

Have you made a feathered star quilt before?

Do you think they’re hard or do-able?

I once thought they were extremely difficult, but no more!

You’ll think so too when you get one of my patterns, not any day soon though.

You’ll have to wait a while longer until I can get my quilt finished (designing & sewing…)

and the rest of the pattern written.

So far I’ve made 4 blocks

and I think that I have all of the step-by-step illustrations just about perfect!

Just as I was finishing those step-by-step illustrations, wondering if I was going a bit overboard, I got the nicest email out of the blue from Dana who had just finished making a quilt from one of my patterns:

Your pattern was very easy to follow . . . it was like you were sitting here telling me what to do next!! I like that!
Have a blessed day . . .
Dana

Needless to say, in my opinion, that’s the nicest compliment a designer/author can get.

It’s also the affirmation that I needed just then.

Knowing that I hadn’t wasted the weeks

I had just spent on those illustrations for just part of that pattern was nice.

Unfortunately, I don’t know what direction the quilt is going just yet,

hence the reason I put it on the back burner to work on my sampler quilt.

Stay tuned.

We’ll all be surprised together, Lol!!!

What have you been stitching?

I hope something fun!

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

Dresden Plates, My Life

How is my Dresden Garden Growing?

Let me just show you how my Dresden garden is growing.

I worked on Tiny Dresden plates all day yesterday.

First, I selected fabrics with Clare’s help.

I then cut a bunch of petals and chain sewed them into strings.

Thanks to Betsy I was able to keep them wrinkle & tangle free until they were all sewn.

Then in front of the TV last night,

after pressing them all to set the seams,

I turned them all right side out.

This morning I awoke with a mission to start making plates!

First I sewed 2 of each matching petal together.

Then gave them a good press to set that seam.

In case you skip this step,

you should know that pressing any seam at this stage

helps to keep it nice & straight.

Also to help me stay organized, I use a wooden cutlery tray keep all of my petals together so I don’t have to go looking for any strays as I move from my machine to the ironing board & back again!

Nothing is worse than losing a petal then having to re-cut and re-sew it to move to the next step…

Here they are all nicely pressed & awaiting the next step.

Next, I sewed two of each pair together.

I love to see the progression, you?

And here is my pretty garden as I get ready to stitch the black centers to each plate.

What are you doing today?

I hope it’s something in your sewing room!

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

Dresden Plates, My Life

End-of-Glue-Bottle-itis Cure!

Were you raised like me with the adage, “waste not, want not”?

My MIL was routinely jabbed by her daughters for spending $10 on nuts to use up the brown bananas in banana bread instead of throwing away the bananas…

Well, I guess some things are just in our genes.

I can’t stand not getting the last of the glue out of the bottle.

Perhaps it’s because it’s a $9.00 bottle of glue,

or perhaps it’s the way I was raised,

but either way I’ve found a cure!

This morning as I was getting ready to glue up some circles

for my latest Tiny Dresden Quilt when

I realized you might enjoy this tip.

I keep my little Dresden plate supplies in a handy wooden tray

so they are always conveniently together.

Since I use Roxanne Glue-Baste-It VERY FREQUENTLY,

it seems when I get to the end of the bottle I habitually turn it upside down wedged in a corner of the tray with my other supplies so the glue is closer to the tip of the needle when I get ready to use it again very soon.

Of course it would slip or fall over so it was not always as I left it.

Then I would have to wait for the glue to come back to the tip to use it again.

Since I also keep some thread there it dawned on me one day not too long ago that the thread spool was the exact right size to hold the needle of the glue bottle and it keeps it perfectly upright.

The almost-gone-glue is at the tip of the needle always!

Who doesn’t have a spool of thread?

Now I can use up the last drop of glue while making perfect little circles!

But, now my Tiny Dresdens are dry and I must get back to work!

Have a good day &

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

Dresden Plates, My Life, Quilt Market

Houston 2016 International Quilt Market

I just remembered that I hadn’t posted any photos of Houston Quilt Market 2016.

Where does the time go???

houstonbooth2016

My good friend Robin, Nestlings by Robin,

graciously offered to come along as my helper.

Chloe, my booth helper the past several years (& daughter)

took a new job that started October 31, so she wasn’t able to come along this time.

She is now working in the NICU.

I hope you never need her services, but if you do, you’re in good hands!

She is also working on her doctorate to be a Family Nurse Practitioner.

I’m so proud of her!

houstonbooth20162

My quilt-as-you-go table runners/wall quilts were very popular.

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My Tiny Dresden Seasonal Series was very popular as well.

My new favorite, Dresdens on the Square…

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I love the muted colors of my booth this market.

Several Moda designers are accounted for here:

Jo Morton, 3 Sisters, Barbara Brackman & Laundry Basket to name a few.

While there, we (quickly) took in the Dear Jane exhibit.

Robin & I are contemplating making the quilt

so it was fun to browse the color combinations…

houston2016dearjanequilt1rusttriangles

houston2016dearjanequilt2reds

The reds are gorgeous, but I think I’d get tired of just using red.

houston2016dearjanequilt3blackhearts

Robin’s favorite had the black heart secondary pattern.

houston2016dearjanequilt4tealtriangles

houston2016dearjanequilt5red

houston2016dearjanequilt6noborder

Leaving off the triangle border would eliminate a lot of work!

But don’t kid yourself, there are still 169 little blocks!

houston2016dearjanequilt7golds-browns

I really like these muted colors.

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Interesting pattern in the gray triangle border fabric.

houston2016dearjanequilt9blues

houston2016dearjanequilt10bright

Another secondary pattern with the color placement of blocks.

houston2016dearjanequilt11bright-black

houston2016dearjanequilt12brightwatercolor

It looks so different with brights!

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I like the rainbow of muted colors.

It’s pretty similar to the original quilt.

houston2016dearjanequilt14origcolors

Really like this one too.

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And this one.

houston2016dearjanequilt16origcolors

And this one…

houston2016dearjanequilt17

I’m still on the fence as to whether or not I’ll start this quilt.

It’s quite a commitment!

What do you think?

Want to make one with us?

We’re still trying to figure out the time-frame.

169 blocks in the center and then another 56 on the border…

225 total blocks!

Just one per week would take 4 1/3 years.

What to do???

If I make the quilt I’ve decided it will be with civil war prints.

That’s in keeping with the original quilt.

For now though, I think I’ll

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

Blog tour with give-aways, Dresden Plates

100 Blocks Volume 14 Winners!

What a fun week of new blocks with lots of winners!

Did you visit Quiltmaker’s blog & win anything?

If not, perhaps today is your day.

Our first winner will win a copy of the new 100 Blocks volume 14.

vol14-cover-200px_69246

The lucky winner is:

***

Nancy D Says:

Yes I have made Dresden plates before. Love the block! And the fabric is so cute!

  ***

Our second winner (one of my blog followers)

will win my original block made with

Autumn Elegance

suznquiltsautumnblockwfallcolors

and the remainder of the Layer Cake.

suznquiltsautumnelegancelayercake

The lucky winner is:

  ***

Patricia Cash Says:

I follow you, thanks for the tutorial.

 ***

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for all of the wonderful comments.

For those of you that have making a Dresden Plate block on your bucket list,

I hope I’ve inspired you to start soon!

Perhaps when the Thanksgiving dinner dishes are done would be a good time, huh???

Don’t forget to watch next week when I will have another give-away

with some fun Classic Metal Company items!

Until then,

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan

A Giveaway!, Blog tour with give-aways, Dresden Plates, Mini Dresden Patterns, My Life, New ideas

Welcome to Day 1 of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks Volume 14 Blog Tour

I’m happy to finally show you my block that’s in the

newest volume of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks magazine.

Dresden Framed #1348,  is on page 35.

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It’s fun to make.

With a little bit of piecing &

a little bit of applique,

you get a beautiful Mini Dresden plate with pizzazz.

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I used the new “Pumpkin Pie” fabric collection by Laundry Basket quilts for Moda.

(all but the olive green which is a Jan Patek also by Moda).

I love to make little Dresden plates!

This block uses my Mini Dresden Plate template.

The paper template is included in the magazine,

but if you want the ease and accuracy of cutting 8 petals at once with a rotary cutter,

use my plastic template.

You can purchase them on my website here.

How about a pretty table runner?

 100blocks1348dresden

Make 4 blocks.

Cut 13 sashing strips 1 1/2″ x 12 1/2″.

Cut 10 corner stones 1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″.

Make a 14 1/2″ x 53 1/2″ table runner.

Perhaps you’d prefer to make a lap or wall quilt.

100blocks1348dresdenwallquilt

Make 16 blocks.

Cut 40 sashing strips 1 1/2″ x 12 1/2″.

Cut 25 corner stones 1 1/2″ x 1 1/2″.

Make a 53 1/2″ x 53 1/2″ quilt.

Here’s a little Dresden plate tutorial.

This block makes perfect use of 10″ layer cake squares!

This is the gorgeous “Autumn Elegance” layer cake by Sentimental Studios for Moda.

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Choose 4 squares and press them with Mary Ellen’s Best Press.

suznquiltsautumnelegancebestpresssquares

With 1 square, cut 2 strips 3 1/2″, subcut 10 petals with the template.

suznquiltsautumnelegancecutpetals

2 more petals will need to be cut the other direction from the remaining strip so be sure and use a non-directional print.

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After cutting 12 petals, there will be a corner left over to cut a center circle for another plate.

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Hardly any waste!

Fold each petal in half chain piecing all 12 petals using a scant 1/4″ seam.

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Trim away most of the seam allowance near the fold, then press the petals flat as sewn.

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Turn them right side out, carefully poking out the points, then press them again.

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A little tray helps me transport ALL of the petals to my ironing board and back again.

Chain piece the petals together in pairs, again using a scant 1/4″ seam.

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Press the seams open, then chain sew 2 of those pairs together.

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Press again…

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Sew these 3 units to complete the plate,

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Be sure to press all of the seams open.

No trimming necessary!

Give another press with more Best Press using the single finger pump bottle.

It sprays with a fine spray that doesn’t over saturate the little pieces.

I spray both sides of the plate, but only press the back side.

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If you’ve used scant 1/4″ seam allowances your plate will lie perfectly flat.

If it doesn’t lay flat, you need to adjust your seam allowance.

Using the pattern in the magazine, cut a 2″ circle of freezer paper.

Fuse it to the wrong side of another 10″ layer cake square.

Cut out with a 3/16″ seam allowance.

suznquiltsautumnelegancefusecentercircletemplate

Glue the edge of the seam allowance with Roxanne basting glue.

suznquiltsautumnelegancegluecentertemplate

Press glued seam allowance to paper side of template.

(Notice my gluing surface?

I’ve been using this same plastic coated brochure from  Classic Metal Company for over 2 years!

I know because I bought one of their big metal barn quilts and have been using this brochure ever since.

It protects my table and my glued pieces don’t stick to it.

After all this time, it’s still like new and all I do is brush off the loose glue once in a while.

Next week I will be giving away 2 cool new products that they now have in addition to their metal barn quilts.

I’ll give you a hint; they light up!

Come back next week for those!)

suznquiltsautumneleganceglueseamallowance

Easily work out any imperfections with Apliquick bars like I show in detail here.

No clipping necessary.

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Voila! Perfectly round circle.

Center and glue the circle on the plate.

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Stitch the circle in place using thread that matches the circle.

I use a tiny blind hem stitch.

It resembles a hand stitch,

but it’s much quicker!

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You can hardly see it, right?

Wet the center circle and let it rest a minute.

Remove the freezer paper through the hole in the back of the plate.

Let the plate dry.

Don’t press the wet plate, that will distort it.

While it’s drying, make the 24 half square triangles

using 2 more layer cake squares.

suznquiltsautumnelegancethangles

I like using Thangles. They’re quick and accurate.

Cut the 4 corner squares.

suznquiltsautumnhstscornersquares

Assemble the block following the instructions in the magazine.

I use the same tiny blind hem stitch to applique the plate to the center of the background square.

I got so caught up in finishing the block that I forgot to take photos of that part, sorry!

suznquiltsautumncompleteblockmovie

That may have happened because I was also listening to Little Women

& started watching when Jo came home to spend time with poor sick Beth.

Movies often keep me company while I sew.

I have a library of movies that I listen to over and over because they’re not so distracting that I can’t sew, well, usually!

Anyway,

it only takes about an hour to make one of these blocks.

(less than 1 movie!)

suznquiltsautumnblockwfallcolors

It looks lovely with my front yard’s fall colors don’t you think?

Sorry the drawing is over now.


go

UP

UP

UP

to the top of this post

and

leave me

a comment

telling me if you’ve ever made a Dresden plate.

And…

I will be having a second drawing as well.

One of my lucky blog followers will win not only this block that I just made,

but also the remaining layer cake to make more blocks with!

If you’d like to win the block & remaining layer cake,

become one of my blog followers then leave me a second comment

UP

Up

Up

above.

If you already follow my blog,

let me know that in your second comment.

If you love making Dresden plates like I do,

here are a few of my latest patterns that use either

my Tiny Dresden and/or

my Mini Dresden plates.

suznquiltsbrochure10-16

You can see them all on my website here.

Be sure to visit the other designers on the blog tour

& Quiltmakers’ Quilty Pleasures blog for more fun and many free prizes.

I will choose the 2 lucky winners this Saturday.

Be sure & tell all of your friends.

Good luck &

Just Keep Sewing…

Susan