Care to Color?

Have you been caught up in the coloring craze? I think I love it now more than ever. Gone are the chunky, rounded wax crayons. They’ve been replaced by super sharp pencils and fine line markers in rich rainbows of color. And coloring books? New works of art all on their own.

free Valentine heart coloring pageSo, of course, I had to make a quilty little coloring page, just for fun. It’s free! Click here to download the single page pdf, then print and color to your heart’s content. It’s a fun way to test out color options for the Pieced Heart Quilt Pattern–an easy-to-make pattern I designed for AccuQuilt–or get crafty and create a hand-colored Valentine for a special someone.

Free pieced heart quilt pattern

Love these fabrics? Check out the full Flirt collection (and don’t miss Love Letter, a new collection after my heart) at!

The Pieced Heart Quilt Pattern is free for a limited time on the AccuQuilt website. Get yours now!


Here’s My Heart

Layers of Love quilted pillow frontOr should I say “hearts”?

Publishing can be an odd profession. I’m always working well in advance of a holiday or event, and usually feeling like I’m a few months behind. Traditional print publishing schedules may mean I spend part of my summer sewing wool scarves or fashioning felt snowflakes for December deadlines. Right now, it’s cold and cloudy–barely thirty degrees with snow flurries–and I’m conjuring spring quilt designs up out of the pixels on my screen.

Online items tend to have tighter deadlines. While the rest of the world was finishing up their holiday shopping, I was sewing hearts. Valentine hearts. Sixty-eight hearts. I counted. Several times.

And I loved it.

Here's My Heart--close up of Layers of Love quilted pillow

Fabrics are Soho Solids from Timeless Treasures.

This Layers of Love pillow is a textural treat. AccuQuilt’s Queen of Hearts die (#55325) made cutting easy-peasy. I layered batting and fabric right on the die. The cut pieces tend to cling together, so alignment is a breeze. The batting-backed hearts are randomly arranged and raw-edge appliqued to a quilted backing, making this a pretty much a fuss-free project! (And it’s a great way to use up those odd bits of batting that are leftover after making a quilt!)

My favorite part? The single heart on the pillow back. (I guess that should be heart number 69.) I love how it kind of floats over the quilted grid. It gives me all sorts of ideas for other projects.

Layers of Love quilted pillow backWant to make your own Layers of Love pillow? Click on over to the AccuQuilt website. The pattern is free for a limited time!

It’s Halloween. And this is the perfect fabric to sew.

Today is wash day.

Today is wash day.

For you young ‘uns out there, that thing in the lower right of the photo is a scrub board, which was used to wash fabric and clothes, back in the day.

A few months ago, I decided to make a quilt. What’s the big deal? you might ask. I make quilts and other projects all the time, mostly as project samples for client designs. Those items are produced on tight deadlines, and I often never see the quilt/tote/pillow/pincushion again once it’s shipped out the door. This quilt, I decided, would be for my first self-published quilt pattern.

Knowing I’d never get the project done without a deadline, I chose a time-sensitive fabric. (Or I should say, it chose me.)

Check out Wicked Eve by Timeless Treasures. Doesn’t it just scream “October”? I sketched out a design, figured up yardage, and ordered fabric. Then the fabric arrived, and it sat. And sat. Pushed aside for paying projects. Buried by other deadlines. But now it’s Halloween and I’ve got to get started. The first step in making a quilt is prepping the fabric, so, today is wash day.

I always prewash my fabrics. I know some quilters skip this step, preferring to dive right into cutting and piecing, and that’s fine. It’s a personal choice. For me, pre-washing eliminates any worries about fabric shrinking, and helps me avoid fabrics that might not be color-fast. An added bonus–any sinus-clogging, sneeze-inducing finishes or scents are washed away. (Not really a problem with any fabrics from Timeless Treasures, but my allergies have been off the charts this year.)

I wash fabric in cold water, with the same detergent and settings I use for regular laundry. To avoid excessive fraying, I trim any threads before putting the washed fabric in the dryer. I set the dryer to “less dry”, so the fabric is just slightly damp when I pull it out, and easier to press. (Yes, I press it. With an iron. And steam.) Once pressed, I fold each piece, right side out with selvages together, so it’s ready to cut.

It’s a start.