Monday, May 13, 2013

Quilter's Favorites

I had every intention of getting this done on Friday, but unfortunately I was so so so sick this weekend I couldn't even get out of bed. Luckily, I'm much better! So enjoy my Quilter's Favorites

  • Any advice for a successful color scheme of a quilt ?
 You really probably wouldn't want to take my advice... I LOVE color, all of it, color that doesn't match, color that does match. As long as it's bright, I'll put it together, and somehow, in the end it always works! I feel like a child when I walk into a fabric store, I just pick what I like. Everything I like, then I put it together... that's how I pick my color schemes, I know it's totally crazy. 

  • Some thoughts about thread and needles, batting, fabrics ?
As far as thread and needle go, I really have no thoughts. I use the needles that came with my machine, I'm sure it's time for new ones. People, help me out on this! Batting is a subject that I studied and studied and studied before I began quilting. I know that cotton shrinks, that polyester washes well, that I want to use high loft when I'm making a quilt for a bed... For some reason though, I always pick bamboo batting. I LOVE it! Not only is the brand I use organic, it's reasonably priced and it quilts so well! On the topic of fabric, I usually always go with cotton quilters fabric, I just find that easiest. 

  • Could you share some tips for easy piecing?
Measure once, measure twice, measure three times, then cut. If you're just piecing squares, it's very easy. I piece the rows first and then the columns once the rows are pieced together. When ironing I iron the backside flat (open seems) rather than opposites, I feel this way it is more compact and you can't see it when the quilt is finished. 

  • If you enjoy other quilt techniques than patchwork, could you share some tips with us ?
Those who read my blog on a regular basis know that I love wholecloth work. It's something I definitely need more practice in and will be working on in the future. As far as tips for working on wholecloth, just make sure you do an outline, it makes life a lot easier. Don't follow what others do, listen to your creative mind and let the color, texture, and style flow! 

  • Some machine quilting tips- if you are a machine quilter ?
I quilt on a domestic machine, so my tip for those of you who quilt on a domestic machine is apply pressure to your quilt as your moving it around. In the beginning I don't think I did this, and you can tell by how my thread tension seemed to be off. I was giving my machine more control than I had, you always want to be in control! 

  •  The sewing machine - please share a few things you love at your sewing machine; what makes it special ? What features do you think are the most important to a sewing machine used for quilting?
I quilt on a Singer Stylist that D got me for my birthday. That is, until I've saved up enough for a Janome. I like the Singer, but it makes it very difficult to quilt on. Prior to quilting I was (and still am) a costume designer, and I must say that the Stylist is PERFECT for that! It comes with every foot you could possibly need for costume design.  As far as features that are important for quilting I believe the machine should have a long/wide neck, something my machine does not feature. Also if you're going to be free motion quilting, as I do, you'll want to purchase a drop down quilting table. This is something that I am saving up for. It gives you so much more space to move your quilt around, and you'll see a major improvement in your free motion quilting. 

  •  Do you have free tutorials on your blog? Share a link to one of your favorites.
My only tutorial thus far... Mug Rugs

  •  Share some tips for organizing the sewing tools, the fabrics, the sewing studio?
My studio just so happens to double as a kitchen... who ever decided to put a kitchen right in the middle of my studio is beyond me!!! Here's some tips on organizing in a small space. 
  1. Label, label, label. Label everything, and keep everything where it is labeled to be. This makes life SO much easier. 
  2. Coordinate fabric by color. I used to have a scrap bin that I just threw everything in together, now I have a few fabric containers that I organize by color and size. It makes finding fabric much quicker! 
  3. Contain everything in one place. My place is our tiny crawl space we have in our front closet. I have everything labeled and packed together in this space so whether I need a needle or a yard of batting, I know where to look! 

  • Could you recommend a book to someone who just started quilting ? A quilting bible ?
I live by Karen McTavish. Her custom curves book has such great information as well as tons of designs! If you've just started, these designs are going to be tough, but trust me, you need to push yourself in the beginning or you'll never learn great designs!!! 

  • List one or two of your favorite quilting techniques and a tutorial/pattern/book where you learned about them ?
My favorite technique is wholecloth. I learned this from Leah Day. I can't express enough my gratitude to Leah for introducing me to this whole new way to quilt. I learned this through her Express Your Love Quilt, of which I'm still working on. I also learned to Free Motion Quilt through this project! 

  • Do you have a favorite quilt designer ?
As mentioned above, I love Karen McTavish! She is by far one of my favorite designers. In the interest of time, I'm just going to narrow it down to her! 

  • Do you have a favorite quilt blogger?
Here's where things get complicated... how do I pick just one!?! Here are my top 3 favorite bloggers, in no particular order. These are the three blogs that I check on a daily basis, sometimes multiple times a day! 
  • Would you like to share one of your favorite quilts, made by you ?
I think my favorite quilt I've made this far is my Express Your Love Quilt. It's not complete, but it is so special to me. 

  • What would be the perfect gift for your best quilting friend ?
Fabric! Seriously, what quilter wouldn't want a bundle of fun fabrics picked out by their best friend!?! Tools are cool, but I'm sure she'd like to pick her own!

  •  Don't Do Like Me!
Being as though  I am a newbie to quilting I make a lot of mistakes. The best that I can tell you as someone who is so new to quilting is don't sweat it. Make mistakes, make the same ones I made, it'll help you learn! Here is the number one mistake that I made that was so silly I can't even believe I did it! 
Put your foot down... literally. Put your foot down. I have left my foot up so many times it's not funny. I don't know why I've done this, I've been sewing for years, it's no different when quilting!!! 

  • If there is something else you would like to share with us, please do it. And please tell us a little about you, we would love to know you better.
Every quilt is beautiful. Every. Single. One. Every quilt is also a work of art. As a quilter, you are an artist. I'm glad I figured this out early on. So many quilters that I talk to don't consider themselves artists. That's a bunch of crap. You are an artist and you are amazing!
About me: I began quilting in November of 2012 due to a photo of a newbie quilter on Instagram. This random stranger girl on Instagram told me to quilt, gave me the tutorial and I listened to her, and I began quilting. Thanks stranger, now internet friend, Jahayma! More personal stuff about me: I live in a small town in Pennsylvania in the Lehigh Valley. I went to college for Political Science and French and am now a full time nanny for children with special needs and a part time pet sitter. I live at my mom's house with my boyfriend and dog, though we're moving on Friday to our own apartment. I enjoy being out doors, running, disc golfing, and hiking with my dog, Madison. I am a gamer. Super Nerd. Science fanatic. I play MMO's (Massive Multiplayer Online), yes, exactly like World of Warcraft. Though, currently I play Guild Wars 2. In my life family comes first, but that includes those friends who have become our family. I love to travel, and when I one day have enough money I will travel. I'm very goal oriented so I save for lots of different things. My large long term goal is to attend the Tokyo Quilt Festival sometime in the near(ish) future. 

I hope you enjoyed my Quilter's Favorites. I very much look forward to reading everyone else's! I want to end with a HUGE thank you to Geta Grama for putting this on. You're awesome girl! 

Quilt on, 


  1. Es agradable leer que otras quilters tiene los mismos problemas e inquietudes que una misma.

  2. Thank you for linking to my party and sharing your favorites. I hope you will have the chance to attend Tokyo quilt festival soon.

    1. Thank you, Geta, for hosting this awesome party so to speak, I'm learning so much!

  3. Sweet! I heart color too. I'm working on a rainbow project now that I'm just eating up... it has ALL the colors. :)

    I change needles a LOT. I may have mentioned I have a tool problem. I like the buy the Schmetz needles because they come in the nice box. That way when I take out say, a metallic needle, and use it for a bit, I can put it back in the Schmetz box and draw a little sharpie mark right over the needle for every hour I estimated it was used. Once it hits 5 - I toss it. :)

    1. oohh boy, I use my needles way too long. I guess I'm going to have to find these glorious needles you speak of. Where do you purchase them?

  4. I love the way you pick fabrics for a quilt, AWESOME! Thanks for sharing, it was lots of fun to get to know you a little better!

    1. Thanks, Pat! Also, thanks for the info on the Gadget II, I guess I'll have to get one now!

  5. I loved this blog!!! Thanks for giving me a shout-out! My break from quilting/sewing has been far too long and I'm hoping to get back into it after my move (how funny that we're both in the middle of moves). My sewing machine started behaving strangely (my bobbin is hopping around and I don't know why) and it was too depressing to deal with for a week which turned into longer. But you're always inspiring me to create! So proud of you!

    1. The bobbin issue could just be due to thread tension or lack of lube! I'll ask around for you, but it sounds like a quick fix. Are you moving to the east coast??? I'm moving a mile down the road lol. Thank you for being the one to get me into this, its totally my passion now! A day without quilting for me is a very sad day indeed haha.

    2. I'm thinking it might be a need of lube... did you already know how to lube your machine or did you find a good instructional online? I read the manual a billion times and took the whole machine apart for cleaning and it didn't affect anything.
      I'm not moving out to the East Coast, just across the state this time.

    3. I took a class on crafts called sewing machine 911. I highly reccomend it, its free! Basically you oil anything and everything that is metal. I've started doing this once a week and my machine runs beautifully now. Good luck with your move!!!

  6. I use the same way to choose fabrics, it´s more fun. Sometimes the colour schemes recomendations look complicated. It´s better to use your heart than rules. Thanks for sharing.

  7. I'm so glad you decided to take up quilting! Thanks for the fun post!

  8. I love to FMQ too. I haven't finished a whole cloth quilt yet, but I did start one a year ago in a class. Maybe I'll get to it this year. Bamboo batting sounds interested. I might have to give it a try.
    Julie @ The Crafty Quilter

  9. Thanks for sharing! I'm glad to read your tips. I wish you luck!


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