April Sandwich of the Month! (In May!) May 01 2015, 0 Comments
Well, we didn't quite get our sandwich of the month in April, but maybe it's because I wanted to wait until this beautiful May Day to have a picnic! So in installment 2 of the Sandwich of the Month, I chose to make a simple but satisfying favorite: salami and cheddar with the added magic of potato chips!
Way back in my college days I worked part-time at a little deli so I got rather particular about how my sandwiches are put together. First, most places put WAY too much mayonnaise on their sandwiches. I like a really thin layer of mayo and mustard and that's it. Also, I will admit to not liking too many veggies on there - they always slip around and a lot of times tomatoes make things kind of soggy (and this is assuming they are in season).
At the deli, I made my own sandwiches for lunch and this salami delicacy was my favorite. Here's how to make it:
Start with bread, of course! I like good ol' wheat for this sandwich, since it's kind of mild and lets the saltiness of the salami shine through! Use whatever condiments you like on the bread - as mentioned, a thin layer of mayonnaise and yellow mustard is a-ok with me. Next, cheese: personally, I think the sharpness of cheddar is perfect. For produce, I keep it pretty simple - a little bit of lettuce and red onion. I know not everyone likes red onion, but I love how it contrasts with the salami and cheese. I recommend using it sparingly though! Finally, the best part: a layer of potato chips! Again, use whatever you like but I think Ruffles are the best - they are thick enough to stand up to the other layers of the sandwich and you really get a good crunch!
So, that's it! This sandwich is a TASTE SENSATION! Obviously, the sodium content is off the charts, but hey, it's not like you're going to eat one every day. Or you could, we won't judge! (Maybe talk to your doctor if you're going to do that.)
I whipped one up and took it out to Green Lake for a fun picnic this afternoon. Since the sandwich is kind of rich, I like to serve it with some fresh sides, like grape tomatoes and orange slices, plus a few extra chips. Throw in a copy of the new Love Patchwork and Quilting and a Starbucks Green Tea Lemonade, and you have yourself a nice time!
We'll be back later this month with our May Sandwich of the Month, hopefully in a more timely manner!
For further reading: If you doubt the deliciousness that is salami, please read this Meditation on Salami by the incomparable Michael Ian Black.
Giveaway! April 13 2015, 109 Comments
Hey, who wants to win some awesome fabric?! I bet you do. We're doing a fun giveaway to show off some of our new favorite fabrics from Moda's new collection called Nomad. The two fabrics we're featuring are Terrain in Bone Onyx (the funky striped one) and Plume in Bone (groovy feathers!). You'll get one yard of each, plus we selected seven fat quarters of coordinating Kona Cotton Solids! The colors have a beautiful earthy quality and bring out the pretty colors in the Nomad fabrics - coral, aqua, teal, charcoal, and more!
To enter, just leave a comment on our blog answering this question: What's your favorite Spring activity?
The contest ends at the end of the day on Sunday, April 19. Good luck!
UPDATE: The winner of our Nomad/Kona Solid giveaway is Debby! An email has been sent for shipping information, so if you're Debby, look in your emails. :)
February Bag of the Month Club! March 27 2015, 0 Comments
Hey there and happy Friday! Have you heard of the Bag of the Month Club? It's pretty fun - for six months you get six bag patterns from six different designers, one a month! On the first of the month a new pattern shows up in your email, and then you can make it and share your pictures on the Facebook group or Flickr page. Kris and I decided to join because we figured it would be give us a lot of bag sewing practice, and we could use some of our fabulous fabric for the bags!
Kris and I have been trading months, so February was my month. The February Bag of the Month is the Hyacinth Bag by Sew Sweetness (aka Sara Lawson)! The bag is a fun messenger style and features some pockets and a groovy flap.
Here it is, hanging out on a tree!
So far, the only bags I have made have been pretty basic tote bags or zipper pouches. I haven't sewed too much with heavier interfacings or interfacings that need to be sewn in (I am all about fusible!). This bag uses Soft and Stable as an interfacing for the exterior fabrics. It wasn't too difficult to use but was definitely new to me! The nifty front flap here hides a panel that has a few credit card slots and a small zipper pouch.
I decided to use a red zipper because why not? This was the first time I had made a zipper pocket where the pocket part was inserted into the bag like this. It was a bit tricky, but luckily the flap covers it.
Here's the back, with yet another zipper pocket!
When I was choosing fabrics for the bag, we had just gotten our big shipment of the most recent Cotton + Steel collection and I knew I wanted to use at least one for the bag. But we also had Doe by Carolyn Friedlander, and that was tempting too! I decided that a simpler print would be more versatile for the exterior of the bag, so I was able to narrow it down to this fab gold and navy Ladder Lines print since it's simple but funky! It also contrasted beautifully with the navy Fern Book from Alexia Abegg's Mesa collection. (Sidenote: I am obsessed with Mesa right now! The colors and motifs are amazing.)
I love the floral so much that I wish I had figured out a way to put more of it on the outside of the bag, but oh well - another time! The color really are so pretty, and it matches PERFECTLY with the gold Doe fabric. Here is the interior of the bag:
Fun! I do love opening the bag and having those pretty flowers show up. If you want to join the Bag of the Month Club, it's not too late! Check out Noodlehead's blog for more details, including all of the designers involved. We would love to see your bag creations! Stay tuned for a post on the March bag of the month made by Kris - it turned out SO CUTE!
New Feature! Sandwich Recipe of the Month March 17 2015, 0 Comments
Well, why not? We are Quilt Sandwich Fabrics, after all! Also, Kris was a caterer before she decided on a career in fabric sales, so it seemed natural.
In this, our first selection, Kris has designed an uber-cool lox and cream cheese bagel that's easy to make and pretty too. If you don't think you like the texture of lox (cured salmon), you could try hot-smoked salmon, or add some tomato slices for a vegetarian version.
For the record, this isn't really a recipe, just more a collection of ingredients and you get to figure out how much you want to put in your sandwich. Anyway, without further ado, here it is, in Kris' own words:
Bagel - sesame seed was used here, but really, you could use any of your favorites
Lemon-dill Cream Cheese (recipe follows) - 2 to 4 Tablespoons
Lox (brined and smoked salmon) - 1 to 2 slices
English cucumber, sliced very thin
Shallot, sliced very thin (you are only using a small amount here)
This recipe is for one sandwich, but can easily be doubled, tripled, etc.
Slice your bagel in half to make a sandwich top and bottom. Toast your bagel, if you like a little more crunch (I would let it sit a little bit to cool before spreading cream cheese). Spread lemon-dill cream cheese over the top and bottom half of the bagel. I used about 2 tablespoons on each half. On the bottom half, layer lox in a single layer (or use sliced tomatoes, if desired), then top with cucumber and shallot slices. Add the top of the bagel and enjoy that bad boy immediately.
Lemon-Dill Cream Cheese
Let an 8 ounce block of cream cheese sit out for a while to soften. Finely mince some fresh dill until you have about 2 tablespoons and add it to cream cheese. Grate some lemon zest into the cream cheese too. I would use the whole lemon - zest only, use the juice for something else!
See? This is super easy and really flavorful - the cream cheese makes it different and special. Let us know if you made this and what you think! Did you make any changes?
Cotton & Steel Bag Inspiration! February 27 2015, 3 Comments
It's no secret that we LOVE Cotton & Steel! Those five ladies are tops, and we are obsessed with their awesome fabric. (Stay tuned for a few new substrates coming soon!)
Sue, one of our customers from Seattle, is a pretty big C&S fan too. She also sews A LOT and has whipped up quite a few beautiful bags with some of her favorite C&S fabric. Let's check out her handiwork!
Sue has great taste in bag patterns - she has made two Go Anywhere Bags from Noodlehead, and also a pretty nifty messenger bag.
Her first Go Anywhere Bag features this stylin' horse print from Melody Miller's Mustang collection. This is one of our favorite fabrics at Quilt Sandwich HQ! Sue also accented it with the Navy XOXO Basic.
Sue's next Go Anywhere Bag uses this groovy print from Sarah Watts' August collection - Lion Garden. We love the soft, spring colors mixed with Sarah's cute illustrations.
We think Sue's choice to use a bright green zipper is inspired - it really pops against the navy and metallic gold dots and picks up the bits of green in some of the arrows.
Another thing we love about Sue is that she often Instagrams pictures of her orders when they show up! Awww... thanks Sue! (Yep, we at Quilt Sandwich wrap your fabric in a sandwich wrapper - it's just how we roll.)
Good work on the bags, Sue! If you like Sue's work, you can check her out on Instagram at suesewcrafty. She posts lots of cool sewing projects and fun travel pictures.
A plethora of zipper pouches! January 05 2015, 0 Comments
Does anyone else think of the movie Three Amigos when they hear the word "plethora"? I know I do!
But anyway! Happy New Year! How's your 2015 going? Mine has been fun, relaxing and productive so far. Something I've been enjoying sewing in the last few weeks are these cute zipper pouches from Noodlehead (who I am kind of obsessed with lately!). These are the Open Wide Zipper Pouches
Cargo Duffles A-Go-Go! December 11 2014, 0 Comments
Howdy! Have you checked out Noodlehead's blog? Noodlehead, AKA Anna, has a TON of amazing patterns available on her lovely blog and some of them are even free! One of our favorites is the Cargo Duffle, which Noodlehead made for Robert Kaufman. This is a really groovy duffle bag, perfect for an overnight trip or just stashing some necessities (sewing supplies, anyone?). One of our friends (and loyal customers!), Matt of Seattle, has been positively cranking out Cargo Duffles and he's been using some awesome fabric from Quilt Sandwich! Check out all of these stylin' bags - different fabrics give a totally different look, so you can see how versatile this fun pattern is.
The duffle that started it all...
This funky bag is Matt's first cargo duffle, and we love it! This wingtip fabric from Timeless Treasures is really cool, and perfect for the dashing gentleman in your life.
For a more elegant duffle, try this beautiful hydrangea print from Moda's Blue Park collection! This pretty floral looks great with the tan and gray accents.
We loved the Heather Ross collection Briar Rose for Windham Fabrics, so of course we love this bag!
Those frogs are just adorable and the green pockets are so cheery!
Normally we would not try to pick a favorite out of all of these smashing bags, but come on - this next one is just too bitchin'! We are children of the 80's, so as soon as we saw this cassette tape fabric from Riley Blake we knew we had to have it. It is perfect for this rad duffle! The purple pockets are especially rockin'!
Well, there you have it! A little sewing inspiration for you, we hope. If you want to check out Matt's other awesome sewing projects as well as his other creative endeavors check him out on Instagram as Odditease. Good work, Matt, and thanks for shopping at Quilt Sandwich Fabrics, and for sharing your amazing bags!
Quilt Sandwich Fabrics
Happy Birthday, Amy Butler! October 17 2014, 0 Comments
Did you know today is Amy Butler's birthday? It is indeed, and in honor of one of my all-time favorite fabric designers, I've got a little round-up of projects I've made over the years with Amy's fabulous fabric.
I give Amy a lot of credit for my interest in quilting. I was just starting to get into quilting when I went into a local fabric shop (RIP, In The Beginning Fabrics!), and they had a huge table filled with Gypsy Caravan. I thought I was going to faint - it seemed so different from anything else in the store. The designs were amazing - beautiful florals, paisleys, dots, stripes, and plaids, in the best, bright colors mixed with soft pastels. I was hooked! I bought a kit to make a quilt that had all of the fabrics in the whole collection in it. I finally finished the quilt and got a longarm quilter to quilt it for me, and it looks great! The embarrassing part of the story is that I have about half of the binding left to sew on and it's been that way for YEARS. BUT - I'm almost done with it! I am now inspired to finish it.
After that, I obsessively started looking for Amy's new lines in stores. I loved her collection Temple Flowers - this group had some really large-scale florals, and a few prints that had a nice tropical flair. I made this giant star-block quilt from some of the purple prints.
Here are some extremely baggy pajama pants made from fabrics from the Lotus collection. I loved this groovy floral/checkerboard print called Water Lily, and the Full Moon Polka Dots were a great basic. This pants pattern is from Amy's book In Stitches.
This next project is one I'm especially proud of. Way back in 2008, Amy Butler and Chronicle Books sponsored a contest to design a bag inspired by Amy's fabric and patterns. Belle was one of the most recent collections, and I loved this charcoal and aqua Coriander silhouette fabric and the orange French Wallpaper print from the line. I also had some unusual round purse handles that I had gotten when I visited my BFF in New York and we went to Mood Fabrics. The colors on the handles matched the Belle prints perfectly so I knew I had a great project for them. The body of the bag was based on Amy's Birdie Sling and the handles are modified from the sleeves of the Lotus Tunic. I got honorable mention in the contest for this bag! (Yep, I'm tooting my own horn here.)
The Midwest Modern collection had beautiful colors and neat graphic patterns in it. I made this baby quilt from six of the aqua, green and yellow prints and some blue solid.
Here's a makeup brush holder made from one of Amy's laminated fabrics. This pretty print was from the Soul Blossoms collection and is called Temple Tulip in Emerald. We still have some of this fabric in stock!
Finally, here's a fun pillow made from one of my favorites from Lark, Charisma in Midnight. Pink and red together is such a fun color combo, and there's just something fun about these big flowers surrounded by tiny little flowers. I have a red couch, so this seemed like the perfect fabric for an accent pillow!
Happy Birthday, Amy! Here's to many more years sharing your beautiful designs, amazing style, and grace with quilters and sewists everywhere. If you're inspired to start sewing with Amy Butler fabrics, we have lots at Quilt Sandwich! Check them out!
Free Fabric Friday (all weekend!) September 27 2014, 2 Comments
If you made your way over here from Sew Mama Sew, thanks! Here's our Free Fabric Friday giveaway item. You get this fun Tango pattern from Cluck Cluck Sew, plus quarter-yard cuts of all of these cute fabrics shown here - enough to make a crib-size top! To enter, just head over to the Free Fabric Friday blog post on Sew Mama Sew, and click on the link to answer our poll question!
Shot through the heart September 16 2014, 0 Comments
Howdy! We hope you're enjoying your late summer/early fall! The weather in our neck of the woods has been beautiful. We definitely won't complain about it, but we are looking forward to some of our famous Washington rain so that we don't feel so bad about staying indoors sewing all day.
Anyway, have you noticed that arrows are the trend lately? They are all over on fabric now! We love this fun motif, and here are a few of our favorite arrow fabrics.
We have two awesome prints from Melody Miller. The first is from her collection for Kokka called Ruby Star. This is an extra-wide linen-cotton blend, so it feels amazing! The colors are also fab.
On a similar note, Melody designed a super-cool arrow print for Cotton & Steel that we are obsessed with! The background is a pretty midnight blue, and the arrows are bright pastels. Both of Melody's fabrics also have metallic gold for that extra sass!
If you're looking for a more abstract arrow print, look no further than these chevron fabrics. Here's Sierra from Bren Talavera for Robert Kaufman.
Feathers by Alison Glass is quickly becoming a favorite among quilters for it's cool graphic quality and the amazing colors it comes in.
A more delicate version of this look is from Joel Dewberry's gorgeous Bungalow line.
Finally, we always love Tula Pink's take on things! Her print Arrowheads from Acacia looks like the points of the arrows from straight on, making a cool geometric print.
Finally, we have a fun quilt pattern available that also has an arrow look to it! This cute quilt is called Sew Edgy from Kati Cupcake Patterns!
And here's what started us thinking about arrows tonight anyway - here's some absolutely stunning quilting from Maureen Cracknell that was on Instagram earlier today! Maureen free-motion quilted some cool arrow shapes, and it looks like she even used some fun decorative stitches from her sewing machine on it. What a great idea, Maureen!
Well, there you go! We'd love to see your arrow projects, and happy sewing!
Fast and easy table runner tutorial August 06 2014, 2 Comments
Want a fun, fast and easy project that will highlight some of your favorite fabrics? We’ve designed this super-simple table runner that lets you showcase some larger-scale main prints and also coordinating basics. You only need four fabrics for the top and it will go together so quickly, you can make one for every season or room in the house! The simplicity of the design also allows you to embellish with fun extras, like hand embroidery or ric-rac, and since it is small it’s a great way to practice your machine quilting.
We wanted to make something bright and colorful for summer, so we started with the Field Day Collection from Blend Fabrics. The main print is Field Day Floral, a lovely floral print with cherries and butterflies on a grassy green background. Cherries Jubilee is this adorable mini-cherry print with pink, yellow and navy cherries. To add a bit of edge we decided to accent these two prints with Timeless Treasures’ Narrow Stripe in black and white. For the large setting triangles, Bluebird Park Flowers in Yellow by Moda made the perfect accent. When choosing your fabric, keep in mind that the side triangles and main print work best if it is a non-directional print.
Here’s what you’ll need to make the table runner – we recommend you pre-wash your fabrics (we try to be a bit generous with our amounts to allow for shrinkage):
1/3-yard main fabric – cut into 3 – 8.5” squares
1/8-yard small scale fabric – cut into 12 – 2.5” squares
1/4-yard small scale fabric for rectangles – cut into 12 – 2.5” x 8.5” rectangles
1/2-yard fabric for setting triangles – cut into 2 – 12.75” squares and then cut each square diagonally into 2 triangles so you have four triangles total
1/2-yard fabric for binding
Backing – 1 3/4-yard if you want to use one continuous piece for the background. If you want to piece the back, you can use a smaller amount.
Getting started: Make sure to use ¼” seams on all of your sewing! You can choose to press your seams to one side or open, whichever way you prefer. Make center blocks: Each block uses one main print square (8.5”), four rectangles, and four 2.5” squares. Sew a 2.5” square to each side of the rectangles, along the 2.5” side. Make two of these units. Using the remaining two rectangles, sew two to opposite sides of your main print square. Press the seams.
After you’ve pressed the seams, sew the rectangles with the 2.5” squares attached to the other two sides of the main print square. Press seams. Make two more of these blocks.
Lay out your three main blocks on point. Place the setting triangles along the sides. Here's an image showing two main blocks and two setting triangles - you'll have an extra main block and two more triangles to add.
Sew the top together. Start with one of your main blocks and sew a triangle to one side. (In the picture below, the left main block is sewn to the triangle to the upper right.) For the center main block, you will sew two triangles onto opposite sides of the square. Sew the final triangle to the last of the main print blocks. Press seams. Sew the units together into the finished top.
After you have sewn the top together, some of the corners will have “dog ears” from the triangle pieces. Just trim these pieces off to finish the top.
Press the seams and entire top again, and then get ready to make your quilt sandwich!
Make a back for the runner – the finished runner size is 16” wide by 51” long, so make a back that is 2 – 3 inches longer on each side. You can either use one length of fabric (you’ll need about 1 ¾ of a yard), or piece your backing. Make your quilt sandwich using your favorite method. Now comes the fun part – quilting! Hand or machine quilt in any way you want – we chose this adorable flower design.
Once you are done quilting, bind the quilt using your favorite method. Now you’re done!
For the backing, we used another print from Blend’s Field Day collection –Vintage Tablecloth in blue, which certainly has a groovy appeal! The binding is the Mini Stripe from Just For Fun by Andover. The green stripe ties the top and back together nicely.
This runner is simple and fun, so you can whip up a few for gifts or just fast ways to change up your decorating. Here are a couple of other options we’re working on.
These fabrics are from Moda’s collection PB&J from Basic Grey. We think they’ll make a stylish runner with the graphic patterns and muted floral on mustard yellow.
Or how about a festive Christmas runner? Kalinka by Julie Paschkis for In The Beginning Fabrics has a great folk-art look and Russian nesting dolls.
We hope you enjoy making this table runner and have fun choosing your own fabric combinations!
Briar Rose Challenge WINNERS! July 16 2014, 3 Comments
Hi everyone! We're so excited to announce the winners for our Briar Rose Challenge! But before we do, THANK YOU to everyone who participated! We are so impressed by the creativity shown in all of the projects, so good work everyone. And thank you if you voted! It was fun to read everyone's comments, and all of the projects got a mention.
Without further ado, the People's Choice winner of the Briar Rose Challenge is.... Shirley! Shirley's adorable Strawberry Fields Hat was picked the favorite - commenters loved how fun and summer-ey it is and noted that it is perfect for the fabric collection. So Congratulations Shirley! You are the winner of a $25 gift card to Quilt Sandwich Fabrics!
Kris and I decided to pick a winner too, because we knew there would be so many great projects that it would be hard for our voters to decide. So the other winner is Jenelle Clark! Jenelle made this gorgeous little sewing and embroidery kit - we love all the detail she put into it! Congratulations, Jenelle! You also win a $25 Quilt Sandwich Fabric gift card!
Thanks again to everyone who made a fun project with Briar Rose by Heather Ross, and thank you for tuning into the challenge! We think it was a success so we're already planning on doing another challenge later this year. Follow us on Facebook and subscribe to our newsletter to receive the latest news on challenges, sales and more. (Newsletter sign-up link is on our main website page at the bottom right.)
Briar Rose Challenge Projects!!! July 08 2014, 84 Comments
Hello! It's time to show off the AMAZING submissions we got in our first ever fabric challenge! We chose Briar Rose, designed by Heather Ross, because it has such a fun, summer-ey feel and we have the entire collection! To recap, we sent two fat eighths to everyone on our sign-up list, and all they had to do was sew anything they wanted! You can vote for your favorite by commenting on this post. The "People's Choice" winner and a winner chosen by Quilt Sandwich Fabrics will receive a prize! The deadline to comment is Tuesday, July 15 at midnight PST.
Without further ado, let's see the projects!
Here's a fun and funky tote bag from Kristen Ballou! We love how scrappy it is.
Here's a beautiful quilt called "Fluttering" by Paula Baumann. We love how the butterflies look a little bit geometric! You can read more about it on Paula's blog here.
Next is an adorable little dress by Kathryn Brady! So colorful and fun. You can see more of Kathryn's work on her Pinterest Page.
Here's a fun ball by Polly Carlson of Pieces by Polly (where Quilt Sandwich Fabrics advertises!). I have always wanted to make one of these groovy balls and we like that Polly used one of her quilts as a backdrop!
Here's something fun from Jenelle Clark! We love her pretty sewing and embroidery kit and she did this nice photo layout too. Jenelle says she started with a pattern from Lots of Pink Here, and then modified it to make it just right for her sewing and embroidery notions. Jenelle has a blog too!
Next up is a sweet little zipper pouch from Marci Debetez. We love the little details like the buttons and pretty lace trim, and the rounded shape is lovely! Plus, the zipper is the perfect shade of green. Visit Marci's website here!
Here is another fun zipper pouch from Allison Dutton! Allison did paper piecing for the tree shapes and the cloud fabric is a great choice for the background. Allison used more Briar Rose for the pretty lining.
Now we have this adorable headband from Karrie Hadfield. She did a great job shaping the pretty flower petals!
Here's a groovy pillow from Anita LaHay. You may recognize this from a previous blog post - it was the first submission we received so we were excited! We always love ric-rac, and the burlap backing is great too.
Next is a fun mobile by Nesta Sangermano! We love how she complimented the nature theme of the fabric with a stick to hang these cute hexies form. The little frog lounging in front of the tree stump is super cute, too. Check out Nesta's blog here!
Here's a sweet little sunhat by Shirley Tener! Shirley calls it the Strawberry Fields hat and we agree that is the perfect name. We love how one side is pinned up by a strawberry-covered button!
Here is very stylin' bag from Erica Toole! Erica made this little pouch for notions, and we love how fun it is! Lots of cute motifs and she did some neat quilting in a bright pink thread. The strawberry is paper-pieced and Erica got the pattern from Kerry and Penny's Sew-ichigo Shop.
Finally, we have a pretty baby quilt from Shannon Wall. Shannon and her husband are expecting their first baby in a couple of weeks (maybe he's even here now!) so she wanted to make a little quilt for him. She kept it simple because it was harder than she expected to quilt while pregnant, but it turns out she had already made this cute crib sheet out of Briar Rose so this simple quilt is the perfect addition! Congrats on your baby, Shannon!
Okay! Well, what do you think? Comment below with your favorite project by Tuesday, July 15, midnight PST and let us know! We are so thrilled with all of them, so I'm not sure how we'll pick our favorite. I also really love the variety we got - way to get creative everyone!
Quilt Sandwich Fabrics
Practice makes better May 26 2014, 0 Comments
Who enjoys free-motion quilting? I have been doing quite a bit of quilting lately and I am really starting to love it but it wasn't always that way. I have taken a fair amount of free-motion quilting classes (with good instructors!) but I was always hesitant to actually start quilting on a quilt top in case it wasn't perfect. (Or at least REALLY good.) If you've ever taken a quilting class, no doubt you've heard that it just takes practice! Now in your head you know it's true. But it's hard to take a quilt top you've worked so long on and just go for it on the quilting. I've decided that life is too short (and my sewing room way too full) to keep unfinished quilt tops laying around, so I've just started quilting them. Not only has it made me feel better to mark something off my list of things to do, but my quilting skills have improved and I even have a little stash of finished baby quilts just in case I need a gift!
If you are interested in improving your quilting skills start out by making a quilt sandwich with some muslin or old fabric. I made two for a class that were both 1 yard by about 42" which is a good size. Just lower the feed dogs on your machine (look in your machine manual if you don't know how to do it - most machines nowadays should be able to do this), and start quilting!
Here's some practice quilting - I just used whatever thread was in the machine and tried out patterns from books (recommendations below). Now, some of it's not great, but I could see improvement even after working on a particular design for just a few minutes. Having a spare quilt sandwich like this is a great idea so that when you do want to try a new quilting design for a quilt you're getting ready to finish, you can do a little practicing. Sometimes I'll even draw the block shape on the muslin with a disappearing pen to practice different ideas.
Once I decided to just do it (TM Nike), I found a baby quilt top I made a long time ago and decided on a super cute quilting pattern that I learned in a class with the awesome Elizabeth Hartman. This adorable flower design was actually pretty easy and didn't even take that long once I got going. And people LOVE it!
I was so inspired when I finished it that I got out another small quilt top. For this one I used a zig zag-ey line with a loop that is from Christina Cameli's book First Steps to Free Motion Quilting. As you can see, some of the rows are closer together than other ones, and sometimes the loops are farther apart than other times, but when you look at the quilt as a whole, it's not really noticeable.
I most recently took a class with Angela Walters who is, of course, awesome. She had tons of great ideas, including some that I was able to use in this quilt. Angela taught the basic clamshell design plus these fun variations, and I love the ribbon candy motif! That one definitely took some practice, but it turned out good on this quilt. It helps to do this design in rectangular sections of the quilt so that you have guidelines for the top and bottom of the design.
There are lots of books and tutorials out there on quilting. I highly recommend these books:
First Steps to Free-Motion Quilting by Christina Cameli
Free-Motion Quilting With Angela Walters by Angela Walters (or any of Angela's books, but this one has a lot of great designs with instructions on how to do all of them, so it is a good reference)
Machine Quilting Made Easy! by Maurine Noble (this is an older book but a standard!)
I also love Elizabeth Hartman's books for quilting ideas even though their focus is on making the quilt tops and not as much on quilting.
And if you ever get the opportunity to take classes with any of these authors, do it!
I hope this has given you a bit of inspiration to try quilting if you've been worried. In my experience, I've noticed that when I show a finished quilt to someone they all think it's pretty awesome. Of course I know where I made a weird shape, or where my stitches got way too long, or I ran into a corner and didn't know how to get out of it. But if you don't point out those "mistakes" to people, they won't find them. So don't be so hard on yourself, and just have fun with it!
Got any quilting advice or challenges you'd like to share? Let us know in the comments!
Briar Rose Challenge finished project! May 20 2014, 5 Comments
Hey, all! If you're participating in our Briar Rose Challenge, no pressure but Anita of Daydreams of Quilts has already finished her challenge project! And it's super cute, if we do say so! She made this adorable pillow:
Aww! We LOVE it! I'm a huge fan of ric-rac, so you can't go wrong with that! And the burlap makes such a great accent for these pretty fabrics. And hexagons! It's just got something for everyone. Way to go, Anita!!! Make sure to check out her blog, too!
Not to worry, there's still plenty of time and we are going to extend the deadline just a bit too - stay tuned for a new deadline soon.
And if you missed out on this challenge, we are definitely going to do another one so find us on Facebook or subscribe to our newsletter (at the bottom right corner of our website) to keep up-to-date on future challenges!
Quilt Sandwich HQ
Giveaway Day Winner! May 17 2014, 0 Comments
Thank you all for visiting our blog and commenting with your favorite summer activity for Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day! We loved reading all of your comments - you all have fun summer plans! We randomly chose a winner, and the lucky lady is Cindy, who said her favorite summer activity is being able to spend more time with her grandkids. That's a great plan, Cindy! We'll email you to find out where to mail these fun fabrics.
Sew Mama Sew Giveaway Day!!! May 12 2014, 301 Comments
Hey there! We're so excited to participate in Sew Mama Sew's Giveaway Day! Let's get right to the fun: We're giving away this groovy collection of fabric!
These retro-inspired farm prints are from the Gladys collection by Anna Griffin. As soon as we saw that funky rooster on the pink background we knew we had to get it! You'll get half-yard cuts of all five of the Gladys prints, plus three fat quarters of these Lecien dots that coordinate perfectly!
To enter, leave a comment telling us your favorite summer activity! (If your comment isn't approved right away, don't worry - we'll be checking them frequently.)
Thanks and GOOD LUCK! The giveaway will end Friday, May 16th at 5:00 PM PST, and then we'll randomly choose a winner! Please make sure to leave your email address when you leave your comment so we can contact you.
And don't forget to check out Sew Mama Sew for more giveaways!
Beautiful Bohemia Bag! May 11 2014, 3 Comments
Hello! We hope you've had a great weekend! Here's a fun project I'm excited to share - a beautiful bag made from beautiful fabric! My manager Paula made this pretty tote bag using one of our favorite fabric lines - Bohemia by Julie Paschkis. This pretty collection features lovely flora and fauna prints in sunny yellow, vibrant aqua, black and more.
One of the fabrics in the collection is a pretty border stripe of flowers on black. Paula used the stripe for the bottom part of the bag, and made it into a pocket too. Paula also loves cats, so she used the groovy black and ivory cat collage for the top of the bag. The small black and ivory dot is perfect for the handles.
How cute is that?! I really love how it turned out! Paula did a great job in the craftsmanship of the bag too. It is soft but holds it's shape well, and the handles are sturdy but not stiff. And check out the awesome zip top! I love being able to zip up the top of a bag so that if it falls upside down (this seems to happen to me in my car all the time), everything's contained.
The flowers on that stripe are just so pretty. We really love Julie's artwork and we have a lot of fabric by her. Check out our entire selection of Julie's fabric here!
See you later!
Briar Rose Challenge! April 25 2014, 1 Comment
The low-down on the Sew Down! April 22 2014, 1 Comment
Hello! Last week I attended the Modern Quilt Guild's most recent Sew Down in lovely Nashville, Tennessee! If you are not familiar with the Sew Downs, they are a fun all-inclusive weekend of awesome classes, delicious food, swanky hotel rooms and fun with other quilters. The Nashville Sew Down became a must-attend as soon as I heard that Anna Maria Horner was an instructor, but the entire line-up was amazing. Plus, Nashville! Home of the Bluebird Cafe, Country Music and Highway 65 Records (for you fans of the TV show).
So our Sew Down started on Friday afternoon, with registration at the super-cool Loew's Vanderbilt Hotel. We got pretty great swag bags, with goodies from Michael Miller, Riley Blake and Dear Stella plus a dvd called Perfect Binding, but of course the highlight of said swag bags was the nifty-gifty from Quilt Sandwich Fabrics!
After checking in, we had perhaps the most highly-anticipated event of the weekend - the home studio tour at Anna Maria's house!!! Yes, the do-it-all mother of SEVEN invited 80 strangers to her house and let us wander around. For real, she had the door to her bedroom open in case we wanted to take a peek. Do I need to tell you her house is amazing? I don't think I do. She had a room with tons of her paintings along one wall, lots of quilts, embroidered and cross-stitched wall hangings and her online fabric store! We were warned ahead of time to bring money, and I think everyone indulged.
Here are a few pics from Anna Maria's house! The next two are from AM's online store.
Here's a cool couch in Anna Maria's attic studio.
AHEM. This was on the top of AM's to-do list in the studio.
That's just a small sampling of the prettiness of Anna Maria's house! The whole thing was awesome, and she walked around holding her adorable 10-month old baby, not at all frazzled at entertaining a gaggle of obsessed quilters.
The next two days were packed with classes, lectures, sewing time, and fun! We had four three-hour classes that we rotated through during the event, and we also had three lectures during meals. The MQG packed the activities in!
My first class was with Carolyn Friedlander, fabric and pattern designer and brain child of the popular Architextures line of fabric. We worked on her pattern called Aerial, which is a cool modern pattern that uses paper-piecing, a technique I haven't had much practice with. Carolyn was really easy going and cool and she was very encouraging too. She brought a few great samples of the quilt in, and had fabric and thread for sale! (She has a coveted set with Aurifil.)
Here's a wall-sized version of the Aerial quilt that Carolyn did. Isn't her quilting awesome?
Here are the two blocks I managed to finish in class. They are fun to make!
My next class was with Anna Maria Horner. Here's the sample of the block we worked on, called Mod Corsage.
Okay, it is sideways. I don't know why. ANYWAY. I didn't get much done on it but it was fun to think about how to make a bouquet seem pixelated, so I'm going to work on it more at home. Anna Maria was a lot of fun, and she also had fabric for sale!
Here I am with AM! Her outfit was so cute.
Our Saturday night dinner was a feast of southern favorites that included CORN PUDDING, fried chicken and short ribs. As you can probably tell, I am quite excited about the corn pudding. We also had a lecture by Alexia Abegg, who wrote a great book called Liberty Love and is one of the designers of Cotton and Steel, which we at Quilt Sandwich are super excited about. Alexia talked about inspiration, creation and motivation and she had a lot of good things to say. We also had a great lunchtime lecture from Elizabeth Dackson, a MQG board member, about making traditional quilts more modern.
On Sunday, we had another full day of classes! My first class was with Angela Walters, quilter to the stars! I loved Angela's class! Her theme was "Small Changes, Big Variety". Angela started by showing us a basic quilting design, then she showed us simple ways to make changes so that we ended up with a lot of ideas. Angela brought in TONS of quilts and samples of all her ideas and let us take pictures. Here's one of my favorite samples, featuring variations on spirals.
Here I am with Angela after class. You can see a lot of her drawings on the wall behind us.
Here's some of my quilting practice from class!
At lunch we had one more lecture, this one from Maddie Kertay. Maddie is a quilter, quilt-store owner, and founder of the group Bad-Ass quilters! She was really funny and just cool. She introduced us to the phrase "quilt famous", which is helpful when you're trying to tell your non-quilting friends how awesome a fabric designer or quilter is and they just don't get it.
Finally, my last class was with Victoria Findlay-Wolfe, author of the book 15 Minutes of Play and winner of Best In Show at last year's QuiltCon! (Seriously, could the instructor line-up for the Sew Down be any better?!) Victoria was also really fun and inspiring. She showed us how to make "new" fabric with our scraps (she chopped up a bunch of Anna Maria fat quarters like it was no big deal) and then fun ways to use the made fabric. She also taught us the importance of Y-seams! Here's just one of the samples that Victoria brought. This one uses TINY squares from her made fabric - it was so cute!
After Victoria's class it was time to leave! It was a whirl-wind 48 hours, let me tell you. Of course, I did get to Nashville a few days early to check it out and I had a great time. I went to the Country Music Hall of Fame Museum, which also houses the Hatch Show Print gallery and store, which was the main reason I wanted to go. Hatch Show Print is of course awesome, and is totally worth your time! Unfortunately I was not able to take a tour, but I enjoyed the posters and other fun stuff for sale. I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed the CMHF Museum! I am not a huge fan of country music, but I like some of it, and I like music in general, so it was interesting to see old instruments and read about the history of country music. They also had a lot of costumes, and the older ones are kind of awesome. I also went to the Johnny Cash Museum, which is equally awesome in a different way. It's much smaller the the Hall of Fame Museum, but still really great. Lots of mementos from Johnny, like hand-written notes and song lyrics, plus videos of performances and other cool things.
Finally, no trip to Nashville is complete without a visit to BOOT WORLD! Boot World is right downtown on Broadway and their special offer is buy one pair of boots, get TWO PAIRS FREE!!!! That is crazy! I didn't do it because what Seattle girl needs three pairs of cowboy boots? Plus, they're spendy. But cool!
Quilt Sandwich HQ
The heat is on! (AKA Riley Blake Basics Challenge!) February 14 2014, 2 Comments
Heyo, everybody! Happy Friday to you! Also, Facebook is telling me that today is Valentine's Day, so there's that.
ANYWAY. Here's a little project I recently completed that I thought I'd share with you. First, I am a member of the Seattle Modern Quilt Guild (holla!) which is awesome, and also means that we can participate in challenges that the national guild presents to us. The MQG's most recent challenge was the Riley Blake Basics Challenge, so we all got six fat eighths of Riley Blake fabric and we could make whatever we wanted with it! In true Becca fashion, I put it off until pretty much the last minute so I figured I'd better make something small. I've also been wanting to try a Quilt-As-You-Go (QAYG) project, so I decided to make a new cover for my heating pad. I am very pleased with how it turned out!
So, here's the fabrics we got as part of the challenge.
Lots of fun patterns and bright colors! The challenge rules allowed you to add any solid fabrics or other Riley Blake prints. I added some lighter gray, orange and yellow solids and then I chose an owl fabric for the focal point (which was not Riley Blake, so I cheated. Oops!)
To do a QAYG log cabin, you need to start out with strips, so I cut the fabrics into random-width strips and also cut a square of batting a bit bigger than my heating pad (1" bigger on all sides).
To do QAYG, start with your first two pieces, lay them right sides together, one on top of the other, smack dab in the center of the batting (or wherever you want the center of your log cabin to be). Then you stitch along one side, using a 1/4" seam. You flip over the top piece and you should have both pieces of fabric right side up. Then you can quilt! I decided to just do straight lines, about 1/4" apart, and I didn't worry if they were perfect. Once you've done the quilting, you add another piece in the same way along the bottom. After you quilt that new piece, add another piece to the opposite side as your original piece. Then you just keep on going!
Aww, I love that owl. As I continued adding pieces and quilting, my log cabin started to get a little crooked but I am okay with that. It's just a heating pad cover! But if you like yours perfectly straight, you will probably want to cut all of your strips with nice even edges and make sure to line them up carefully. After I finished the top, I added a back and a lining, using instructions for a basic tote bag from one of my sewing books, and I even put a little velcro along the top to hold it together.
Did you make anything for the Riley Blake Challenge? We'd love to see them, or if you just want to see some fun projects, Google it - there are lots of pictures out there!
Quilt Sandwich Fabrics
Time for a Catnap! January 26 2014, 0 Comments
We just love Lizzy House! Every time she comes out with a new collection we know it's going to be great. Something about her funky style and groovy color choices is just fun, and she has a unique way of looking at things, whether it's constellations, animals, or people. Her new line is called Catnap and is just adorable! Check it out!
Don't you love it?! We loved all of the colors so much we finally just decided to get our three of our favorite prints in two colorways each. The little tiny mice, called Mousey Mouse, are so cute, and we loved the cat faces, especially the purple version. The main print has cats and other little critters and is so pretty on the dark eggplant or the white too! We love the whole collection with Lizzy's famous Pearl Bracelet design in silver or chocolate.
We think Catnap would be perfect for a cat bed, or a quilt for your favorite cat person!
Go Seahawks! January 19 2014, 1 Comment
Well, you can't live in the Seattle area without feeling the excitement of the Seahawks! They are doing awesome, and we are excited to see the Big Game today! In the meantime, we've chosen some of our favorite blue and green fabrics for our favorite team. (12, of course!)
There you have it! GO SEAHAWKS!!!
Radiant Orchid Roundup January 10 2014, 2 Comments
By now you've probably heard that Pantone's Color of the Year for 2014 is Radiant Orchid! As a former graphic designer I always enjoy hearing Pantone's prediction for color trends and so far I've liked their choices. They always go something bright and I'm a fan of bright! (As an aside, a few months ago I got to attend a lecture by Pantone's Executive Director, Lee Eiseman, and she was great! I recommend checking out her site.)
ANYWAY, what do you think of the color? Not everyone is a purple person, but if it's good enough for Prince it's good enough for me. I do love pretty purples, though. Here are a few of my favorite fabrics in the shop, in all shades of orchid!
Well, there you have it! I don't think I can pick a favorite - I'm always into dots but that little calico from Heather Ross' Briar Rose just gets me every time!
See you soon,
Quilt Sandwich Fabrics
Groovy Graphics! January 03 2014, 0 Comments
Welcome to 2014! We hope you are enjoying the year so far! What's on your sewing and quilting agenda for the year? We are planning on making Quilt Sandwich Fabrics even better for you, and as for me, I'm hoping to get started on some sort of challenging quilt project. I have my eye on many quilts from Sarah Fielke's awesome books (Material Obsession 1 and 2, Hand Quilted with Love and Quilting From Little Things). She uses lots of scraps and puts some weird fabric combinations together, but somehow it all works! So this year I'm hoping to improve my sewing skills a bit with one of her more difficult patterns.
Anyway, I decided to start off the New Year with some of our favorite graphic prints from the shop! We have always loved dots and stripes but more and more lately, it seems that groovy graphic prints are becoming popular and we just can't get enough! From a great chevron to funky geometrics to something abstract, here are just a few of the awesome graphic fabrics we have.
To start us off, how about Denyse Schmidt? You can't go wrong with Denyse! This is Jagged Stripe in Malachite from the Florence collection.
Next up, from Lizzy House, she of the famed Pearl Bracelet design. Lizzy's Constellations collection was full of groovy graphics and space motifs, all in pretty shades of blue. This Prism design is super pretty.
Another designer with a flair for the groovy is Joel Dewberry. His Bungalow collection is full of prints straight out of the sixties. These two fabrics, in gold, coral and brown, are definitely groovy!
2013 brought us the fabulous line called Sun Print by Alison Glass. These are great basics that come in coordinating colors and can be used in just about any quilt project! We have oodles of them, but here's a little sampling.
Last year I started to get pretty obsessed with mint green. I have no idea why, it just was popping up all over and I started to go a little crazy. I think it looks pretty great with a lot of colors, but it's especially interesting with these royal blue, peach and yellow accents, like in these two fabrics from Tule by Art Gallery Fabrics. Say it with me: Groovy!
We couldn't have a "favorites" list without two of our all-time favorites: Tula Pink and Anna Maria Horner! These two amazing ladies just keep on cranking out the fabric hits and every time they do, we swoon! We also noticed recently that their fabrics really complement each other nicely. Something about their unique color stories and funky patterns just seem to work together. Here we have this awesome Arrowhead print from Tula Pink's Acacia coordinated with Anna Maria's Going Up from Free Spirit's True Colors collection.
Finally, a graphics list just wouldn't be complete without a chevron! Technically, this is called Herringbone from Camelot's Design Studio line, but it will satisfy your love of chevrons. Gray and white is stylish and classic! A can't-miss fabric for quilts, home dec, fashion and more.
You can find all of these and more in our dots, stripes and graphics section of our shop!
See you soon!
Isn't it good Norwegian Wood! October 18 2013, 1 Comment
Let's get down to business: we just got Norwegian Woods Too from Michael Miller and it was so darn cute we posted it immediately! We just can't get enough of adorable woodland creatures and we love Michael Miller so we knew we had to get this collection! It has hedgehogs, squirrels, owls and other woodsy images in a groovy, bright palette of colors.
This fun collage print gives you a good idea of what the collection is all about - acorns, leaves, foxes and graphic patterns in fall colors accented with jewel tones.
Here's a cute panel with big woodland animals!
Sometimes panels can be tricky to use, but the Michael Miller website has some great inspiration ideas, and they have a very cute and simple quilt with these panel images and images from the collage print. The panel images would be cute throw pillows too!
We also have a ridiculously cute border stripe with squirrels, hedgehogs and funky trees called Nuts to You! I kind of can't handle it how cute it is. This pattern runs along both sides of the fabric.
Here's another really interesting quilt from Michael Miller using this border stripe. I love the jagged edges at the top and bottom!
And here's another great quilt idea for this print.
Finally, we have a great assortment of little woodland coordinates from this collection. FIrst, who doesn't love hedgehogs?! I know I do. And this two-tone forest print is super pretty. We also really loved this cute acorn pattern, and these fall leaves are pretty too!
One more super cute project idea from Michael Miller! Stuffed owl, anyone?
Well, there you go - perfect fabric for fall! We think it would be great for kids' projects, but we wouldn't judge you if you wanted something for yourself. It's just too cute!
Happy Friday! October 11 2013, 1 Comment
I feel like I keep repeating this, but welcome to our new blog and shop! FYI - you can now shop from our site, so after you read this blog why don't you check it out? And we're still adding more fabrics so keep checking back.
Here's some of our new Halloween fabric - we know, Halloween is right around the corner, but it's not too late to whip something up (or just wait for next year!). This new collection from Cloud 9 is called Dem Bones, and we love it! Just black, gray and white with skulls and bones in stylish patterns. We saw this at Spring Quilt Market and they had the cutest samples made out of it - little kids' button down shirts and awesome neckties! Plus, it's organic!
Happy Friday, everyone!
Coming soon... September 27 2013, 0 Comments
If you're new here you may notice that there is some awesome fabric available on this site! Well, hold on to your hats because more is a-comin'! We haven't officially launched yet because we're still posting lots of great fabric, but you can still shop what's currently available. (Although maybe you want to wait - it's gonna be GOOD!)
In the meantime, you can check out our old blog which is available here: quiltsandwich.typepad.com.
Testing...testing... August 22 2013, 0 Comments
Welcome to the first blog post of our new blog! We are getting super close to opening up this here shop on our new website and when we do, it's gonna be off the charts if I may. We have TONS of fabric that is just waiting to go up so it will be a shopping paradise! Check back soon for your favorites from Denyse Schmidt, Anna Maria Horner, Heather Ross, Lotta Jansdotter, Art Gallery Fabrics, Alexander Henry, Dear Stella, Moda, Riley Blake and more!
See you soon!
First Post April 08 2013, 0 Comments
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