Lover’s Knot Quilt Pattern

I’m excited to share my latest quilt design – the Lover’s Knot quilt pattern that is featured in Make Modern magazine, issue 11!

Make Modern Issue 11 Cover

My work probably fits in the modern traditional style of quilting the best, and this latest quilt reflects that aesthetic.

Lover's Knot Quilt

This is an old block- probably.  Barbara Brackman’s Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns labels it as a “lover’s knot” from the Old Chelsea Station Needlecraft Service (OCS).  This company began in 1933, but this block has no date and doesn’t really look like what most quilters would consider to be a lover’s knot.  Even before this company started, this name has been assigned to a wedding ring-style quilt, a snowball/flowerish quilt block, and various other pieced blocks.

Lover's Knot Quilt

I had never seen this block made before, and I thought it would be a beautiful quilt, so I made the paper pieced pattern for it and made the quilt in bright spring colors against a low volume background.

Lover's Knot Quilt

I really wanted the pink to stand out, so I stitched just inside of the pink spikes.  The diamonds have swirls and pebbles, and the low volume starts have straight line quilting to echo the outside shape.  I quilted some easy curves inside the turquoise centers.

Lover's Knot Quilt

This quilt is 48″x64″, so it makes a nice lap quilt or can be made for a baby that you really, really like.  I love the secondary patterns this design makes, and want to make a larger version in blues if I get some free time this summer.

Lover's Knot Quilt

The pattern is in Issue 11 of Make Modern, which was just released on May 20, 2016.  There are some other great patterns in this issue, as well as interesting articles.  Stacey O’Malley of Slo Studio made an amazing quilt that uses hourglass blocks and inset circles.  Alyce Blyth of Blossom Heart Quilts has an article on the math to do biased binding, and Sandi Hazlewood of the Crafty Planner recaps QuiltCon.

It was also fun to share the issue with Leanne (Devoted Quilter) – who was part of the Round Trip Quilts Bee I did last year (she made the X marks the spot mini with curved piecing and purple!), and Anne (Hudson Valley Quilts) who wrote an article about online learning and is part of the Hudson Valley Modern Quilt Guild with me!

Lover's Knot Quilt Pattern

I also was a featured maker this month, so if you want to see more of my work or hear my opinions on quilting, you can check that out 🙂

Meet the Maker feature

Make Modern has offered a special discount code for contributors to share – enter issue11friends at checkout to get your copy of issue 11 for just $6 AU.  I always love this magazine, and read my copy on the train on my iPad (which is nice, because then I don’t have to recycle it when I get to the city, like I do with most magazines).

Linking up to some of the following: Main Crush Monday @ Cooking Up QuiltsFabric Tuesday @ Quilt StorySew Cute Tuesday @ Blossom Heart QuiltsLet’s Bee Social Wednesday @ SewFreshQuiltsNeedle and Thread Thursday @ My Quilt InfatuationFinish it up Friday @ Crazy Mom QuiltsWhoop Whoop Fridays @ Confessions of a Quilt AddictTGIFFShow off Saturday at Sew Can She

2+2 Blouse Pattern Review

My daughter thinks that dinosaurs are awesome, and loves purple.  Luckily, Lizzy House made this amazing purple dinosaur fabric while she is in this phase!

2+2 Blouse

Pattern: Oliver & S 2+2 Blouse

Pattern Description (from designer): Here comes the school bus! Girl’s tunic-length, A-line blouse features neckband ties, gathered front with applied patch, and button back, options for long and short sleeves.

Pattern Retail Price: $13.95

Fabric Required: 1 yard for 2T, view A

2+2 Blouse

Amount of fabric used: I was happy I had the full yard because I wanted to make sure the dinosaurs lined up.

Sizing: 6 months – 8 years

Alterations: I added extra length so she can wear it longer.

Instructions: Mostly easy to follow.  The gathering in the front was a little confusing the first time I did it because I was having trouble picturing what fabric was ending up covered versus needing to be finished.  It’s not quite as neat as I would like, but next time I make this I’ll be fine.

2+2 Blouse

Pattern Issues: None

Fabric Choice: This is a quilting cotton, which works well for this pattern.  Does it get better than purple dinosaurs?  Not for my purple-loving, dinosaur obsessed daughter!

2+2 Blouse

Finished Product: This shirt is adorable.  My daughter is not quite sure what she should do with the ties though.  Sometimes she ignores them, some days she pulls on them continuously.

Notes for future makes: Add more length.  I think I made it 2T with 4T length, and I wish I had added a little more length so she can wear it longer.

Final Thoughts: I wasn’t sure how my daughter was going to feel about the buttons all the way down the back, but she doesn’t seem to even notice them.  This is a cute shirt, and even though it’s a bit of work, it’s adorable and I want to make it again.

Introducing: Forging Steel Quilt Pattern

I am excited to share my latest pattern with you: Forging Steel.  This pattern is optimized to make use of charm squares or layer cakes so you can use your favorite fabric collections!

Forging Steel Quilt Pattern

You may remember Forging Steel from Issue 8 of Make Modern magazine.  This is probably one of my favorite quilts.  I love how the swirls on the background stand out against the bright fabrics of the blocks and border.  This quilt uses an anvil block as the base, but with more half square triangles!  The border brightens the quilt, and updates a traditional pattern, while leaving plenty of negative space to play with quilting.

In this expanded and updated version, I have included expanded illustrated instructions for the lap/large baby quilt from the magazine, as well as a large twin/double and queen-sized versions of the quilt.  There are now 2 block sizes, 3 quilt sizes, and 2 methods to learn to make half square triangles (2 at a time and 4 at a time).

Forging Steel front view

The traditional anvil block gets a modern update with negative space, and a HST border.  Make it in light or dark fabrics, scrappy, or even from two colors to get a more traditional look.  I’ve used four square patches for the block centers in my Cotton & Steel version to create additional scrappiness or one large block in the Milliefleur version to show off Bari J’s amazing fabrics.

Forging Steel Milliefleur

Go crazy with the quilting, because this quilt has plenty of opportunities for you to practice new fills or to perfect your favorite design.  Or, you can do a simple allover and let the fabric shine.

Forging Steel Milliefleur

The quilt pattern is available in lap, twin/double, and queen.  I call it a twin/double because it’s really the recommended double size, but it looks good on a twin bed.  As you can below, it has a nice overhang on a twin sized bed.  This bed frame has a footboard, so that’s why the foot of the bed is hanging a bit oddly.

Twin Forging Steel Milliefleur

This pattern is on sale for an introductory price of $7.50 through May 20th.  Find it on Craftsy from Quilts Actually.

Please share if you make this quilt by tagging your creation with #forgingsteelquilt!

Linking up to some of the following: Fabric Tuesday @ Quilt StorySew Cute Tuesday @ Blossom Heart QuiltsLet’s Bee Social Wednesday @ SewFreshQuiltsNeedle and Thread Thursday @ My Quilt InfatuationFinish it up Friday @ Crazy Mom QuiltsWhoop Whoop Fridays @ Confessions of a Quilt AddictTGIFFFabric Frenzy Friday @ Ft. Worth FabricShow off Saturday at Sew Can She

From the Bookshelf: The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting

This Spring, I had the opportunity to view a copy of The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting prior to its release.  Both Angela Walters and Christa Watson are incredibly talented quilters, so I was very excited to see their book with tips on both sit-down and long-arm quilting.

Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting cover
Photo credit: Brent Kane and Martingale

I have to admit, I was initially a bit skeptical that a book split in half aimed at both long-arm and sit-down quilters could truly have enough information that was applicable to both types of quilters to make it valuable to everyone, but these ladies have figured out a way to do it.  The fills and designs that they use are almost universally applicable (except for the spiral design Christa uses on the Exploding Star quilt – that is too much of a hassle for a longarm!).

As I was reading though this book, I was quilting “Forging Steel”, and used it as an opportunity to try out some of their suggestions.  Angela is well known for her point-to-point quilting, and she shows a couple examples of it in the book. I used it in one of the blocks for my quilt as well, although you can see it far better on the back of the quilt.

Forging Steel Milliefleur

I also used the wavy lines for another block.

Forging Steel Milliefleur

I like the clamshell design, so it’s not new to me, but it was a good reminder to see it as an option.

Forging Steel Miloliefleur

In addition to numerous quilting designs, there are also 10 quilt patterns.  They are generally simple, because they are meant to be quicker to sew so you can get them pieced and start practicing quilting faster.  I can definitely see myself making one of these patterns in the future if I need a quick baby quilt.

You can see some of the quilting better on the back of the quilt!  Busy fabric tends to hide dense quilting.

Forging Steel Milliefleur

I don’t always agree with all advice given in the book – Christa presses her seams open, and I am a devoted press to the side quilter, but I know that is an age old argument so I won’t hold it against her.

Overall, this was a good quilting book.  I would say it is aimed a more of a beginner-intermediate level quilter, so if you are a masterpiece quilter you will probably not get very much out of this book unless you want to learn more about the modern style of quilting.  If you are starting out, I think this is a great resource because they do a really good job of making quilting accessible, and challenging you to do some free motion quilting instead of just straight lines.

If you are interested in the Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting, it is available from Christa, Angela, their publisher, Amazon, etc.

Eleanor Dress

This winter I was really tired of buying shirts for my daughter that were too short, so I made several shirts and dresses for her that are long enough for her to not immediately grow out of.  I had made a previous version of the Eleanor Dress pattern as a shirt, but can’t find a picture of it – despite the fact that she wore it all last winter!  I really like the dress version of this pattern.

Pattern: Eleanor Dress from Shwin Designs

Eleanor Dress

Pattern Description (from designer): Everyone loves a knit dress, comfy and easy to wear. The pattern also has the option for a top. This knit dress pattern comes with many options to create simple by stylish knit dresses. From an oversized collar to ribbing at the neck, long or short sleeves and every combination of them all. This one pattern will take you through many seasons and with the sizes 12m-8years included it will take you through many years of wear.

Pattern Retail Price: $9 for PDF

Fabric Required: 3/4 yard for 2T

Amount of fabric used: I was using leftover fabric from another project so I don’t know exactly what I had, but the amount seems accurate.

Sizing: Includes 12 months to 8 years.  My daughter’s chest was in the 2T range, and that’s what I made and I am pleased with the fit.  Due to the stretch of the fabric, she is still wearing this dress even though she is now wearing 3T and slim-fit 4Ts in RTW.

Alterations: I made this exactly as designed.

Instructions: They are step by step instructions with a photo for each step.  The samples are in a solid color so it is easy to see what is happening, and I like that the short sleeve and long sleeve samples were in different colors so I skip the instructions that didn’t apply to the version I was making.

Pattern Issues: None.

Fabric Choice: I used an athletic fabric that I bought from Fabric Mart last year on a super sale.  I think it’s meant for leggings, but it makes a really cozy shirt/dress.

Eleanor Dress
Finished Product: This dress is cute.  My daughter loves the pockets.

Notes for future makes: Baste the pleats down prior to sewing the skirt to the bodice.

Final Thoughts: I will probably make the short sleeved version again as it warms up.  It’s a cute dress that my daughter didn’t want to take off after trying it on to make sure it fit.  Now that she is getting into the “dresses are the best” phase, she likes it even more!  I like it because it is a dress that she can still run around with her friends in.