Category Archives: My Pattern

Christmas Lane: A New Holiday Quilt Pattern

September 30th 2016

Now that Fall is here (well theoretically speaking, I live in Florida for Pete’s sake!) I am looking forward to getting some Christmas projects done. I am planning some quilting pillows and stockings, a belated birthday bag and crafting some tags. But first, I’m so excited to share my new pattern called Christmas Lane, just in time for the Holidays!
Christmas Lane

One of my fondest childhood memories was the inspiration for this quilt.  My dad would take the family out for drives during the holidays looking for festively lit neighborhoods. My sisters and I would be eagerly looking out the windows (or fighting about which one would be closer to the window) nose pressed against the glass. If it was a rare cool night, our heads would be hanging out the window. We’d be hollering to our dad to go down this street or to hurry to the next block. Of course, the original  “Feliz Navidad” song, by Jose Feliciano, would be blasting in the car while we all sang along, perfectly bi-lingual.

Christmas lane

Christmas Lane finishes at 62″ x 64″ almost square. My version is made with the Hello Darling line by Bonnie and Camille with a Bella Royal Blue background #9900-19.The pattern features houses with 6 different Christmas themed blocks: Ornaments, wreaths, peppermints, two kinds of trees and presents! Each design has two variations so no two houses are the same. This quilt has twelve houses but a quilter can easily add “more blocks” to increase the size of the neighborhood.

Christmas Lane

The houses here in Florida don’t generally have chimneys but definitely lots of decorations and lights during the holidays. Each house in the quilt features a string of lights across the top and framing the Christmas Lane is a bold Holly border at the top and bottom.

Christmas Lane

An adorable picket fence divides the blocks which is easily made by strip piecing and daisy chain sewing. As you can see, the quilting is perfectly done  in snowflakes by @quilterlove66 (thank you!) to complete the holiday feel. (I know, it doesn’t snow in Florida) But it looks great, doesn’t it?You can make your own version of Christmas Lane just in time for the holidays, by going to my shop and downloading your PDF file, paper patterns to follow.

christmas-lane-kirsten

Kirsten was gracious enough to test my pattern. She lives in Australia so hers really does have a Christmas in July feel since it’s their Summer season during the Holidays. The warm tones in her quilt really reflect a Christmas Down Under, she did a great job, thanks Kirsten! Hop over to her blog, gemini-stitches and see more of her quilt.

qm-badges

To make your own version of Christmas Lane just in time for the holidays, you can get the pattern via PDF download in my shop right now, paper patterns to follow. Christmas Lane will be making its debut at the International Quilt Market in Houston next month, where I will host my first booth #2338. Stop by and say hello, I’d be so happy to meet you!

A Pretty and Practical Bag for Travel

April 28th 2016

I love my Vintage Picnic Traveling Tote. You may have seen me over-gramming about it on Instagram a few weeks back. It was so fun to make!

Traveling Tote 2

It’s no secret that I hoard collect fabric. It’s no secret that I have a vault for my most favorite lines. (pictured below) It’s no secret that sometimes I forget what I already have. And it’s definitely no secret that if I don’t buy “that fabric” right now it will be gone FOREVER!! At least that’s what the fabric addiction neurons in my brain keep saying. But I digress.

The Vault

My traveling bag, my “go-to-bag-with-all-the-right-pockets-holds-everything-I-need-for-traveling” bag had broken and I had to make a new one ASAP.  And there was no question, once this fabric arrived, that it was the right one for this project. It was also the first fabric bundle I busted open so soon after it’s acquisition. Really.

It’s Vintage Picnic by Bonnie and Camille. I loved the classic red and blues in this line, the gingham and dainty flowers, whose scale is not so dainty, made a perfect match.

I chose the darker bolder colors for the outside, since it will hide any wear and tear and smudges.

traveling tote choices

I had made these scrappy stars and wanted to incorporate them into the bag. The first design showcased four across the top of the bag.

traveling tote design 2

 But after sleeping on it and playing with the fabrics some more, I changed the design and fabrics several more times.

Traveling Tote inside

The inside would be in the lighter color ways of the line with a bit of Hello Darling thrown in. That divided pocket was a must, I kept the broken bag and use the size and inside as a sample. I know, no one can see the inside of these aqua dotted divided pockets, but I know it’s pretty in there!

pocket options

Besides the beautiful colors, I was determined to make it with zippered outside pockets with the prettiest linings. These pockets turned out to be perfect for boarding passes, lipstick, my phone or dollars for tipping if necessary.

traveling tote outer

Above is the outer part of the bag. I sewed and quilted it all in this chartreuse green #1231 thread by Aurifil. There is a crazy method to quilting a bag with divided inner pockets and zippered outside pockets.

Traveling Tote quilting

I am still perfecting the zipper tab but it works!

traveling tote zipper2

I know there are so many bag patterns out there, but this one is so pretty and practical, I’ll be making a pattern for it, and revealing my crazy methods, for the handful that want to make it. Sign up for my newsletter for the heads up on the pattern.

If you want to save your fabric for this pattern, you’ll need:

1/2 Yard main blue

1 FQ side panels

4-6 FQs for outer pockets, pocket linings and inner pockets

1 yard inner lining

1 FE for sashing (gingham)

Scraps to make four star blocks (4″ finished)

(1) 18-20 inch zipper, (I prefer larger so I can trim)

(2) 9 inch zippers

1 square yard of

Accents or details you may want to add.

traveling tote details & accents

The finished size of the Traveling Tote is 14 inches high, 16 inches wide at the top, 11 inches wide at the bottom and  6 inches deep. I still love my bag!

Traveling Tote 1

And here it is in action! It really is great for travel! I hope you wanna make one!

traveling tote summercrafter

A Year in Review

January 12th 2016

If you are not seeing enough posts here, find me on Instagram.

Happy New Year! I don’t know what happened to 2015, it came and left in a flash. I was really having a hard time recalling events and projects but as I looked back via Social Media 🙂  I did see some highlights.

For starters my WORD last year was

FINISH image

It was a complete struggle for me, maybe more in connotation because it gave me stress and I wasn’t enjoying the idea nor was I accomplishing what it was supposed to do. The purpose of the Word was to get me to follow through, actually reach goals and get things done. I am a process type of person so the pressure was kinda ruining it for me, ya know? So I decided to drop it around Summertime (see that, I didn’t even finish with my word!)

Keystone, CO Dercum mountain view

In January, we took a nice trip to Colorado, which is always fun, although I didn’t find any quilt shops.

I started this heart wreath last Valentine’s and hope to put the last of the strands on it this year. I love Valentine projects, I also have a Valentine pattern I am working on.

In March, I met all these amazing ladies that are also working on their quilting businesses.

Baby Dean Collage

I made this quilt and pillows for Baby Dean who was born in June, see post here.

Vintage pattern Simply Retro 1

and I finally finished this one for his Grandpa, our pastor.

totes 2015 Collage 1

It was a blast to learn new things while making these totes, bags and pouches, most of which were gifts.

pattern Collage

I finally launched my first 6 patterns this Summer and visited some shops on vacation (more here and here) and they are now being sold via distributors (Checkers, Brewer, Quilters Warehouse) and my online shopping cart and I have more coming out soon!

As a new follower of Instagram this year (find me @elaine.summercrafter), I met so many great quilty people and participated in various swaps. First was the Rainbow Mini swap, more here.

Beachbound swap 2015 Collage

Then the Beach Bound Swap, for which I made my first Dresden block, more here.

Home Sweet home swap 2015 Collage

Next was the Home Sweet  Home Swap, which was perfect for my swap partner who had just gotten married and had moved to a new place. Read more here.

Pat Sloan radio

Oh, and I was on Quilting Radio with Pat Sloan, woot!!

vermont 2015 Collage 2

In the Fall we enjoyed Vermont, although we missed the Fantastic Foliage Splendor it’s famous for.

Christmas swap 2015 Collage

Soon after Summer, the Christmas swaps started popping up on Instagram (find me @elaine.summercrafter) and I couldn’t resist joining two: Christmas Craft Swap 2015 and The Most Wonderful Time of the Year 2015 Mini Quilt Swap. The pillows are what I sent with personal embroidery and glass seed bead embellishments. The mini quilts are what I received, I was so happy with this exchange! These are so treasured, I will be glad to pull them out to decorate every season. Thank you @foreverquilting and @mommyhead7.

 

And just when I thought I was done, @vojen invents the B&C (Bonnie and Camille) Christmas Ornament Swap. That was a complete bust for me. I got on an ornament making marathon and I could not stop! I made Scrappy Christmas tree sachets filled with Balsam Fir, tutorial here, and I sent some, not only to my Swap partners, but other quilty friends I met on IG. Fun!

20151206_183018_resized

Everyone got Peanutized this year. Have you tried it? Go here.

hearties 2015 Collage

On a total whim, I made these craft “Heartie” ornaments after another fan posted her version on the Facebook Fan page of our favorite show When Calls the Heart on Hallmark Channel. We both kinda got carried away making renditions of all the characters. Find a tutorial here.

Christmas truck Collage 1

My last and most favorite project was this Vintage Holiday Embroidery Pillow I made for a friend. I used the pattern from Sherri Falls at This n That patterns and for the Patchwork, I used Holly’s Tree Farm Fabric by Sweetwater for MODA. I love how it turned out, now I have to make one for me!

december listing

I also did plenty of listing this year with 30 days of lists  and loved it! (Another opportunity coming in March)

  Christmas tree 2015

And just like that it was time to say “Merry Christmas” which was here today and gone tomorrow.

Miami beach 1

I wasn’t going to do a WORD of the year in 2016. I did a MORE and LESS list. The first thing I noted was More Nature and I am so glad I did just that on January 1st, I went to Miami Beach (which is a rarity). What’s the first on my LESS list? Social Media!

Progress

I did stumble onto this word PROGRESS which perfectly complements my MORE/LESS concept that allows success without stress or pressure, just moving forward and developing over time which relates to all aspects of life and work (including blogging). So I think we can both see it was a busy year (although I didn’t blog as much as I should have) I have set great goals for this year and have started working towards them already! What are your goals and plans, or your WORD for this new year?

Beach Bound Mini Quilt Swap

September 2nd 2015

Have you ever been in a swap? I don’t mean a wife swap, or a kid swap or a swap meet. I mean a crafty, quilty, creative swap. You make something for a total stranger (based on the swap theme) and a total stranger makes something for you.  Sometimes there are extra goodies involved. I have to say that I am completely hooked! I found these swaps on Instagram. Follow me @elaine.summercrafter

insta vacation

So here is how it goes. Someone on IG posts about a new swap. Harry Potter, Downtown Abbey, Princess Bride, Pirates, Bonnie and Camille, Beach Bound, the themes are endless. Then you click on the original post, go to the link in the profile and sign up. Shortly thereafter you get emails with dates, rules and finally partner information. Sometimes it’s secret, sometimes it’s open.

beachbound mqs Collage

Now you make a mosaic of things you like related to the theme and post it on IG with whatever hashtag the host suggests. This way others in the swap, and your partner, see what your tastes and preferences are when you share. I had two beach mosaics. The one above and the one below.

beach bound mosaic

The first swap I did was a Rainbow Mini Swap, see that post here. The next one, shipped out August 31st, 2015 was this Beach Bound Mini Quilt Swap #beachboundmqs.

Beach quilt bbmqs

Finished size 21″ x 25 1/2″

I was in the group #beachboundflipflop adding that little detail of our group was fun.I also like to try something new for each swap. For this one I made my first Dresden to be the sun. dresden

I knew that I wanted to make a beach scene, my partner and I have similar tastes. I wanted the waves to be “wavier” but it was more involved that I had anticipated, so I strip pieced sand and water colors and sewed it to the sky at an angle.

beach bound quilt base

After this part, I started working on some focal points. This beach umbrella was just the thing  to incorporate some of my favorite scraps. I also added some button embellishments.

beach umbrella applique

I added some birds to lighten up the sky

seagulls

and quilted the clouds.

sky quilt

As I pondered how to quilt the rest of it, I immediately thought of walking on the beach

shadow beach

and decided to put footprints right on the edge of the shore. I accented the water with waves and the sand with terrain quilting.

beachy quilting

The perfect finish was to bind it with flip flop fabric

flip flop binding

which also added a pop of color.

footprint quilting

I even embroidered a little message as an extra. Ain’t it the truth?

beach embroidery

Since signing up for the swap, I have been collecting goodies to send with the mini quilt.

beach extras bbmqs

So….when are you signing up for a swap? I have three four more to go!

Belated Birthday Bag

June 14th 2015

I said I would make her a bag for her birthday. And I did. Almost a year later but in time for vacation! That has to count for something, right?

gray and gold bag done

I remember that summer afternoon last year, I was obsessing over this gold and gray fabric variety Julie from Stitchin’ Stash had in her shop. She was so gracious and patient with me (helping me match combinations) as I selected the ones I wanted to purchase. The flower fabric is from my first visit to Hobby Lobby!

gray and gold fabric

I knew the general exterior design would be similar to my vacation tote from last year.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

For the patchwork, I used the technique from the Scrappy Trip Along. You sew strips together, cut them horizontally so you have squares. Sew end to end (like a tube) and unpick the seam where you want the color pattern to continue. You can select random or patterned. I did patterned this time but I REALLY prefer random.

gray and gold patch technique

I was trying to imitate the style from a bag I already have from Marshall’s. I won’t tell you how much it cost and how that compared to the cost of time and fabric for this one, but way more enjoyable and prettier for sure! Once the outside was done, the lining was easy to choose.

gray and gold lining

I decided early on that I would add inner pockets and a zipper (like the bag I had) first I thought about three pockets, but later decided two would be better. I’ll have to ask the owner how that worked out!

gray and gold inside

The construction was tricky. I  had to quilt the pocket units first then sew them into the lining pieces. Then I quilted the outside of the bag flipping the pockets one way, then flipping them the other way to quilt the bottom and other half of the bag.

gray and gold pocket plan

Once it was all quilted I sewed the sides together. It was too thick to do a French Seam (pictured below) as I had wanted so

french seam

I sewed a 1/2 inch seam to make sure and catch the multiple layers. I also serged (zig-zag stitched) them to make them as secure and tidy as possible. I didn’t even notice the pockets were uneven until…. It must have been around 2 am at this point. 🙂

gray and gold serged seams

bag side view

I did a boxed bottom and I am happy to say that came out perfect!

gray and gold box bottom

It also had a zippered top and handles inserted between the patchwork and top panel with extra stitching so it would hold when the bag was full.

gold and gray bag

Of course I added a little label.

gray and gold label

Overall, I think it got two thumbs up, but I still need to practice zippers in all it’s forms.

gray and gold bag

You can tell it’s a pretty big bag, 18″ by 16″ by 6″ (estimate) I love the happy yellows.