Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Zucchini Bread

I had thought that I planted only 1 or 2 zucchini plants along with my other squash seeds, but it seems I have a few more plants then I anticipated. Good thing my family likes zucchini. I thought I would share a really good zucchini bread recipe with you. It's pretty yummy, I like the added vanilla flavor... it's a great afternoon snack to go with my tea (or coffee) as I work on my quilting.
So let's grab a little snack and brew some coffee and go do some hand stitch applique and watch a fun movie like 'French Kiss' or 'You've Got Mail'.

Happy quilting!


Saturday, August 20, 2016

Needle Turn Applique

During these lazy days of summer I have fallen in love with needle turn applique again. I have a couple of quilts that I did in the 80's that had some hand applique. There is something so relaxing and therapeutic about hand stitching a quilt block. I also think it's very 'old school'. I have pulled out my two very big projects, my Dear Jane quilt and It Just Takes Two quilt. I have been camped out in my living room watching chick flicks, drinking my tea or diet coke and hand stitching. The perfect way to spend the day... I'm not perfect at hand applique but let me show you the process. Just don't look too closely at my clunky stitches. I'm sure I will improve as I continue to work at it. It's been awhile since I last hand appliqued.
I have traced my design onto the 'wrong' side of the background fabric. Then I layer the
design fabric and the background fabric right sides up. Then I used white thread and basted
on the drawn lines. It's really hard to see in my picture....

From the 'front' side you can see my basting easily.

I trimmed the 'design' fabric a quarter inch from the basting stitches.
I pull the basting out as I turn the edge under to hand stitch. Remember to clip corners and curves as you sew along. I am using thread that matches my design fabric.
Here are some of my blocks that I've done needle turn or reverse applique on.
As you can see, I've been busy catching up on my Takes Two quilt. I am only using scraps from my stash.

I have always loved applique. If you ask me my favorite type of quilting, I would have to say applique is on top of the list along with paper piecing. Most of my designs (almost all) is fusible applique, which I love. Fusible applique is quick and easy, but I'm starting to think of designing some needle turn designs too. hummmm it's time to look for another good movie and pull out my hand stitching... I hope that you give needle turn applique a try.

Happy quilting and stitching!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Let's Talk About Seam Allowance

Seam allowance, seam allowance, when I was a beginner quilter, I didn't think much about seam allowance. I was young and had to take my time to concentrate on sewing straight lines let alone worry about the size of my seam allowance. The last thing on my mind was if I was sewing an accurate quarter inch seam! lol.... well, I was able to 'fudge' back then and not think about it so much based on the easy peasy quilts I was making at the time. (Not to knock easy peasy quilts, we all love easy peasy quilts ... easy quilts were hard for me when I was a beginner quilter.) Now remember, when I started quilting, back in the stone age, I was cutting everything out using a scissors, pencil and a wooden school ruler. Many of my blocks were far from accurate based on the results we can achieve with today's tools.  Beginner quilters have all sorts of tools available to them today that make accurate cutting and sewing so much easier. How did we ever function without the rotary cutter! I find that if a block isn't turning out right, chances are your seam allowance is the culprit. Seam allowance is important and I always check it when I start a project.

 Some of you are wondering why check your seam allowance, I have a guide on my sewing machine. Well, every machine is a little different. It's always a good idea to check. Once I start sewing a quilt on my machine, I do not switch machines while working on a quilt. (I have three machines, 'Lucy', 'Ethel' and 'George') Believe it or not, there can be differences between machines too, ever so slight... but depending on your project, it can make a difference.  Here is how I check my quarter inch seam.
In this photo my seam line is just outside the 1/4" mark... it doesn't seam like much...

But, my two blocks should measure 2 1/2" and look... I'm an 1/8th of an inch off..
In a block that has several 1 1/2" blocks sewn together, an 1/8th of an inch adds up quickly.
Here my seam line is just within the 1/4" mark....

My two blocks measure 2 1/2" exactly.... Perfect!

So the moral is that 1/4" seam really counts. It is worth the time to measure it from time to time so you know exactly where you need to line your fabric up so that you have the perfect 1/4" seam. There are many seam allowance tools available in quilt and hobby shops, and they are all wonderful.  So remember to check those seams and have a wonderful quilty day.

Happy Quilting,

Sunday, July 31, 2016

August's Block ~ Santa Claus!

This month's block is Santa! Did you know that if you don’t believe in Santa, you’ll get underwear in your stocking! Well that's what I told my boys thru out the years and I can report that I have never put underwear in anyone's Christmas sock. My  boys are 30 and 21 and they still believe in the spirit of Santa and we still fill Christmas socks during the holiday season. My family certainly believes in Jolly St. Nick, so I had to include him in the BOM quilt! I love seasonal quilts and love setting quilts out for Christmas. There’s something extra special about a Christmas quilt.  Let’s have fun a make a row of Santa’s for our Christmas quilt. (If you don’t want a row of Santa’s, feel free to repeat one of the previous blocks.) So let’s get started…

Here I have all of the pieces laid out to sew the 'plain' Santa block. 
I have sewn the squares onto the rectangles to form Santa's hat.
I'm all ready to construct the Santa block. I made two for my quilt.
Love how my plain Santa block turned out. The buttons
are perfect for Santa's nose and eyes.
My picture is sideways.... but thinking about sewing all of these squares together will do that to you! lol.... you can see I have all of my blocks lined up ready to sew, but first I need to sew my triangle squares.
All of my triangle squares are done, so now I'm off to finish putting
my checkerboard Santa together.
'Checkerboard Santa'
I only used two fabrics for my Santa's hat. You can use several different red fabrics for a scrappier look. I made a total of 3 checkerboard Santa blocks for my quilt.
I didn't sew the buttons onto my quilt until I was finished quilting it. It's not pleasant working around buttons while you are machine quilting.
The pattern can be found for FREE this month in my Craftsy Shop and also on my website. Also, if you ever need to find past blocks or tutorials, I have a tab at the top of my blog labeled 2016 BOM that you can click on to get links to all past blog postings for this quilt. A complete listing of fabric supplies can be found on my website, Craftsy Shop and also under the 2016 BOM tab on my blog. Remember to post pictures of your progress on Instagram #quiltdoodledesignsBOM2016 (you can also tag me at Quilt Doodle Designs) There is also a flickr group you can join and post pictures. I love seeing pictures of what you guys are doing with the Tis the Season patterns. It is soooo much fun to see the quilt made in different fabrics! Love it!

Button packs are available in my Etsy Shop. I have packaged the button packs a couple of different ways. Either as one big pack with everything in it or individually for each design/row.

There's also a handy dandy grab-able button to post on your blog to help me promote and get the word out about this fun Christmas BOM .  Please help to spread the word!

I hope that you have fun making this block this month. It's one of my favorites to do. I made a couple extra ones for some companion projects to go with my finished quilt. The 8 1/2" Santa can be substituted in my Reindeer Pillow pattern to make a Santa pillow. Wouldn't that be adorable to put out for the holidays? Stay out of the heat, grab a glass of iced tea and do some quilting. It's a great way to spend a hot summer day!

 Happy Quilting!
grab button for Quilt Doodle Designs
<div class="quilt-doodle-designs-button" style="width: 200px; margin: 0 auto;"> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> <img src="" alt="Quilt Doodle Designs" width="200" height="200" /> </a> </div>

Saturday, July 30, 2016

We Have a Winner!

It’s time to announce a winner!!!
It's been awhile since I've had a giveaway! It was so much fun to host one and hear from all of you. Thank you for all of the sweet comments. Do know, I read each and every one. I wish I could send you all a note back! I ask you what you would like to see on the Doodle Blog and I loved all the ideas! You see, I have been in a writing rut and needed a little push... thank you for all of the ideas! Your ideas have inspired me!

Now onto picking the winner. I have a wonderful giveaway that would be so much fun to win...
Wilson and I are giving away a Bali Cracker which contains 40 - 10" x 10" precut squares. 
Maddie girl picked out the pack of InvisaFil Thread... it's a set of 6 - 400m spools.
This thread is wonderful! Maddie and Wilson used and picked our winner.

... and our winner is!!!
'gibbygoo56' please email me your address so that I can mail out this awesome prize!
Thank you for all of the awesome ideas for the Doodle blog! It helped spark my imagination and I am back in the studio drawing these ideas up! I'm looking forward to showing them to you in the up and coming weeks.

Happy Quilting!!!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Giveaway Time!

It’s Giveaway time!!!
It's been awhile since I've had a giveaway!
I have a wonderful giveaway that would be so much fun to win...
Wilson and I are giving away a Bali Cracker which contains 40 - 10" x 10" precut squares 

Maddie girl picked out the pack of InvisaFil Thread... it's a set of 6 - 400m spools.
This thread is wonderful!

How can you win? Leave me a sweet comment on what kind of tutorials you would like to see on the Quilt Doodle Blog. Follow the blog for a second chance to win, leave me  comment that you do follow. Remember, if you are a 'No-reply' blog follower, you need to leave me your email address. It breaks my heart when I get no-reply comments and I have no way to get a hold of you!


For a third chance to win.... share my giveaway on your blog, or tweet it etc. and let me know how you shared it in a comment.
Good Luck!!!

Wilson, Maddie and I will pick out a winner this Saturday, July 30th!

Happy Quilting!!!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Easy Summer Appliques....

Are you a beginner to applique? Well....Summer is here and so are a couple summertime applique designs from Quilt Doodle Designs. They are quick and easy. They are perfect applique projects for a beginner! A great way to use up some scraps of fabric. Grandma's Bowl is perfect for someone learning machine applique. It has gentle curves for learning. The yo-yo cherries are fun to make and add a special touch to this design. My picnic basket pattern is also fun to make and would be a perfect 'housewarming' gift. (Especially if paired up with a brownie mix)

Both patterns are available as an instant PDF download on Craftsy and Etsy. I hope that you give them a try. These are fun designs to make up and have a couple of hostess gifts on hand. It's always nice to grab a sweet applique towel and wrap it around a bottle of wine for a quick hostess gift. They are also fun to use to dress up a picnic or barbeque table setting.
Let's enjoy summer, beat the heat and quilt inside with the fan and air conditioning!
Happy quilting,