Tag Archives: hand applique

A new Serendipity Sampler class…

We started a new Serendipity Sampler class at Village Fabric Shop a couple of weeks ago.  Here are some pictures of three finished Samplers.  They will be a huge help to the “new kids” as they plan their blocks.img_9346This one belongs to Joyce, the queen of fussy cutting.  She used a variety of Tula Pink’s fabrics.  She replaced the piano key border with two inner borders and a one-fabric outer border.  Beautiful.
img_9350img_9351img_9333This pastel beauty belongs to Beverly.  She used a variety of Heather Bailey fabrics.  Her teal berries and that dark pink fabric give this quilt continuity.  BTW, Ginabean Quilts custom quilted all of these.  Love.img_9334img_9335img_9336img_9337img_9339This is Beverly’s SECOND Serendipity Sampler.  She used lots of Amy Butler and pulled from her collection of beautiful brights.  It is a show stopper.
Here’s the one that started it all.  🙂  This belongs to me; I made it a long time ago.  My friend Sue, “reinterpreted it” in modern fabrics and we were off!  Thank you Sue!img_9355img_9354img_9353img_9352

Hope this helps my new students.  I’ll be posting their work soon.  No pressure!!!  HAHAHAHA

Thistle Thicket progress pictures


Debbie’s Thistle Thicket Center.  Wow!   She reverse appliqued that dark center ring.  Genius.


Here’s her patchwork border and her large border fabric.

IMG_6628Her “proposed” circles.  We like.  🙂

IMG_6622Mary Ann’s beauty.  Mary Ann repeated the same fabrics.  It’s a very soothing center.

IMG_6623Patchwork inner border and gray Joel Dewberry outer border.  Love.

IMG_6625Here’s a closeup of Mary Ann’s petals and plumes.  It does not get any better than that!

IMG_6632Ann’s center.  We were absolutely wild about this one.  She’s using the Alison Glass border as her inspiration.  Check out the different colors in her four bulbs/petals/plumes.   Fabulous.

IMG_6634The circles and leaves are just cut-outs.  She was “experimenting.”  We all do that!  🙂

IMG_6635She’s making two….

IMG_6636Here’s the center with her border fabric.  She fussy cut those thistles as one piece.  They look like little owls.  Perfect.

IMG_6637A closeup of the border fabric.  LOVE.

Paula also finished her center but of course I forgot to take a picture of it.  I’m such a good friend.  Trust me, it’s pretty wonderful.  She did some pretty cool stuff with lights and darks.  Sorry Paula!  I’ll post extra pictures next month!!!

IMG_6639Here’s the progress from another class.  They are just finishing the “Tinkertoy centers.”  Here’s Kay’s color palette.  What is not to love about this one???  So glad you are joining us Kay!

IMG_6640Here’s Alice’s center.  Wait until next month!  She is on her way to wonderfulness.

IMG_6642Helen’s center.  She’s using the same border fabric as Mary Ann for her inspiration.  She’s just adding a little coral for some fun.  So proud of her!

IMG_6643Becky’s stick center.  🙂  That’s a printed background folks.  Such a good choice!  Just wait until next month.

Darla chose a dark gray background and she has some glowing fabrics for it!  Progress is being made.

Hope these photos help you in your Thistle Thicket journey!  Let me know how I can help.  Beautiful work!

Thistle Thicket Month 1: Erector Sets

IMG_5937Here are the blocks from our first Thistle Thicket applique class.  Linda F’s center.  She’s using Alison Glass Ex Libris.  Love the diagonal center.

IMG_5940Cydney’s center.  She’s nicknamed hers “Head on a Stick.”  Stay tuned.  🙂

20150824_114356Bev couldn’t be with us.  She sent me this photograph.  She wasn’t sure she was going to lie this one so she started a second one.


Ha!  Bev likes a challenge.  We can’t wait to see what you do!

IMG_5941Fowler’s!  Do you not love those striped stems?

IMG_5939Linda S’s center.  She set her patchwork on the diagonal.  Excellent workmanship and I love the rich purples.

IMG_5938Ginny’s beautiful Liberty fabrics.  I was able to sit with her at an Open Sew this week and watched her add this.


Ha!  Too much fun!  Tula meets Liberty.  Ka-boom!  Beautiful!

These six women put a lot of thought into their fabric selections.  They are all excellent hand appliquers.  The class is going to be a lot of fun and I am a very fortunate teacher.

IMG_5395Next month they should come back with centers looking like this…

IMG_5417and then this.  No goofing off in my classes!

The Circle Quilt


Liberty Lawn circles appliqued on double gauze and hand quilted.  The fabrics are from Trailer Stash Fabrics.   I was probably inspired by a tutorial on Purl Soho’s wonderful blog,  The Purl Bee.  I don’t remember seeing it in my Pinterest wanderings but I’m sure I did.  🙂  My buddy Carol also spurred me on.  🙂

IMG_588840″ square.  Wool batting.  Liberty Lawn back.  Yum.  It weighs nothing.  It is the perfect baby quilt.

IMG_5890Hand quilted with Aurifil floss and linen thread.

I’m teaching it as a hand applique/big stitch hand quilting class in September but it’s kind of easy-peasy.   I thought you might be interested in how I put it together.

IMG_5598First I trimmed my double gauze to 40″ square and stay stitched the edges because the double gauze ravels badly.   I appliqued six different big circles (about 9″)  to the background.  I used templar plastic for applique (thanks Debbie G) to make my circles.  Freezer paper will work.  Raw edge fused will work.  I just wanted to preserve the softness of the fabrics.

IMG_5603 (1)Of course I needed more circles.  I used Karen Kay Buckley’s Bigger Perfect Circles for the smaller sizes.

IMG_5627I added some more circles.  🙂  I liked this so I glued the circles down and
hand appliqued them.  That was fun; the fabrics are so wonderfully thin and soft.  I cut away the background under the circles.  That was scary but I liked the effect.  The gray double gauze caused a shadow.  Cutting it away allowed the Liberty colors to be true.

IMG_5668 (1)This next part was not so fun.  I taped my Liberty Lawn backing to the floor.  I used a wool batting from Trailer Stash.  It has loft but no weight.  Not too poofy; just right.  I used A LOT of safety pins to baste it.

IMG_5842 (1)I hand quilted it and I did NOT use a hoop.  I have been to a couple of classes where the teachers pin basted and did not use a hoop and I have seen my own students do it.  Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks.  It worked nicely because the quilt was poofy and full.

IMG_5890I used Aurifil floss because Gina had it in the shop.  I liked it because it comes on cute wooden spools.  I used four strands.  When I finished quilting all the circles, I thought the big circles were too poofy and needed some more quilting.

IMG_5773 (1)I cut a BIG freezer paper circle and randomly traced the shape on the quilt with a blue water soluble marker.  Thanks to Jennifer M for that idea.  She’s in a Monday night stitching group that I attend.  You should come.  🙂IMG_2589I hand quilted those circles during a road trip to Nashville, TN to see Larry.  He likes to help me sew.   I used Normandy linen thread because I wanted the background quilting to blend.  I really liked the results.

IMG_5842I finished it and then hand stitched a running stitch around the outside of the quilt.  I trimmed it and bound it with leftovers from the back.

IMG_5888I washed it in Soak and air dryed it.  If you are local, you should go by Trailer Stash just to squeeze it.  I really like it.

Gina has kits, including the wool batting and it will be there for the September Shop Hop.  I’ll teach the hand applique in September and the big stitch hand quilting in October if you want to join me.  My classes are listed on my class schedule page.

Let me know if you have questions about the process!





October’s Serendipity Blocks

Here are the blocks from our classes in October.  The “how to trim up” post is under the Tutorials tab now.  Good luck!!

If you are interested in making your own Serendipity Sampler block of the month quilt, please contact me.  The January 2015 Sunday afternoon class is full and a new Monday morning class time is under the class schedule tab.  This is a beginner applique class.  No experience necessary!



IMG_3702IMG_3673IMG_3672IMG_3671IMG_3669 (1)IMG_3643IMG_3640IMG_3638IMG_3636IMG_3634IMG_3630

Month 1 Serendipity Sampler

I have started teaching a new applique block of the month at The Little General.  The pattern is from Kim Diehl’s book Simple Comforts.  I have taught the traditional version for several years at Knit One Smock Too.   Sue Lauer took my class last year and made this beauty from modern fabrics and of course I fell in love with it.   The Little General hung it behind the shop counter, we worked up a class schedule and now I have some beautiful first month blocks to share with you.

sue's ss little general


There are lots of hours in these blocks.  I think they are beautiful!!  Thanks to my students for letting me share their work.  Enjoy!


20140708_104540 (1)Beverly’s; LOVE the teal circles!

photo 1 (13)Jennifer’s…you are getting a preview of her next block 🙂

photo1Fowler’s block; she’s brand new to applique and her work is wonderful!

IMG_3190Sheri’s; she made that geometric print work!!

IMG_3189Denise’s block; LOVE her flower color choices.

IMG_3188Cydney!  She plans to use the black/white fabric again.

IMG_3187Ginny; she’s off to a pretty wonderful start.


IMG_3186Katie’s block.  Look at the fussy cut berry holders in the center.


IMG_3185Kay can do anything!  First time making circles…


IMG_3184Becky is an experienced appliquer and her color choices are pretty wonderful.


IMG_3164Joan is off to a great start!  The multi-color zig-zag is her focus fabric and she’s working on her berry colors.


IMG_3163Ann’s block; she makes wonderful fabric choices!


IMG_3162Jackie’s block.  She thinks she will use purple for her berries.  First timer; awesome work!


IMG_3161Joyce wins the fussy cut award!  Seriously wonderful.  Tula Pink never looked so good.


IMG_3160This is Sandra’s block.  Never appliqued before…up until 2 am finishing her homework.  🙂  LOVE.


IMG_3158Gina’s; she has “inserted some teal” since this photo.  Stay tuned…

And finally, this great picture.  Thanks again Sue for hanging your Sampler and letting us ponder.