April 30, 2020

Pinwheel Bookmarks

When I shared the Black Eyed Susan blocks I made for Darlene in the True North Bee, I said that I made a lot of bonus HSTs while doing all the stitch-and-flip units. I turned the HSTs into 2" unfinished pinwheels, using them as my leaders and enders while working on a few little projects.

Then I wasn't quite sure what to do with them. There were 10 pinwheels, all in coordinating colours, but in kind of random combinations. I tried arranging them into a pleasing layout so I could make a mini quilt or mug rug out of them, but I just wasn't feeling it.

Then I hit on the idea of making bookmarks and I loved that idea so much I did the entire project without thinking to take a single picture of the process. Ooops! Oh well...here are the finished bookmarks 😊
fabric bookmarks | DevotedQuilter.com
Five pinwheels in a row felt like it would make the bookmark too long, so I chose to add two 2" squares to the mix so I could make three bookmarks that are 1½" x 6". I had a strip of the same white print that is in some of the pinwheels, so that's what I used for the backs. I chose not to use batting, in the interest of keeping the bookmark as thin as possible. Even without batting, they have a nice heft because of all the seams in the pinwheels.
pinwheel bookmark | DevotedQuilter.com
I always save bits of ribbon, so I had a length of orange ribbon that worked nicely. I stitched it to one end of each bookmark, then stitched the fronts and backs together, leaving a gap for turning.  Folded the seam allowances under after turning, pressed, then top stitched all the way around and they were done.
pinwheel bookmark | DevotedQuilter.com
Quick and simple, oh-so-cute and made entirely from scraps 😊
pinwheel bookmark | DevotedQuilter.com
I've listed them in my Etsy shop, if you're looking for some new bookmarks, for yourself or for a gift.

April 28, 2020

TNB Blocks - Catching Up

I've fallen behind in sharing my True North Bee blocks, so here's a quick catch up post 😊

Conni asked for scrappy patchwork hearts back in February, using this tutorial. These were super quick and simple to make.
patchwork heart block | DevotedQuilter.com
At 18", the blocks feel huge!
patchwork heart block | DevotedQuilter.com
In March we made blocks for two people. Darlene requested these beautiful flower blocks, which feel like the height of summer to me. Maybe it's the oranges and yellows that make me think of sunflowers.
black eyed susan blocks | DevotedQuilter.com
These look more complicated than they are, though there was a lot of cutting involved. The pattern for the blocks is here. It requires a lot of stitch-and-flip units, which would normally mean a lot of wasted fabric. I made bonus HSTs instead, then turned them into pinwheels. Tiny little pinwheels that are 2" unfinished, to be exact. Isn't it cute??
tiny pinwheel quilt block | DevotedQuilter.com
Sherry asked for Raspberry Kiss blocks with bright colours for the X and low volume for the outsides, using the tutorial from Wooden Spoon Quilts. I've made RK blocks a few times now and I always love them. I might need to make a whole quilt of them for myself!
raspberry kiss blocks | DevotedQuilter.com
For April, Janice said she loved the Modern Maples block that we made back in September for Rhonda so much that she wanted the same thing for her own blocks. So, maple leaf blocks in fall colours with a white background. Simple and beautiful 😊
modern maples blocks | DevotedQuilter.com
Phew, now I've finally shared all the blocks I've made 😊 It's fun getting to root through my fabrics to choose the blocks to make for each person and seeing what block everyone chooses. There are three months left to this round of the True North Bee, so there are more blocks still to come.

I have a big pile of the blocks that have been sent to me, as well, but I haven't laid them out to take a picture yet. I asked everyone to make the Path the Friendship block that I designed and I'm looking forward to getting my quilt put together one of these days.

April 27, 2020

Instant Results

Devotion for the Week...

There are a lot of things in life that take a lot of time and effort before we see results. Losing weight, learning an instrument, getting out of debt or saving for retirement are just a few examples. Last summer I was having trouble with my IT band while running. Though the pain would flare up in either my knee or my hip, the solution was to strengthen my glute muscles. Simple enough. Unfortunately, though, it would take a few weeks of doing the exercises consistently before I would notice any difference during my runs. I wanted to be able to do the exercises two or three times and have the problem go away completely, but that's not how it works.

Things that take a lot of time and effort before we see results are really hard to stick with, aren't they? If we're putting in the work, we want instant results. We definitely don't want to have to keep working and feeling like we're getting nowhere.

There is one action a person can take, though, that provides instant results. Belief in Jesus instantly moves a person from unrighteous to righteous. "For he has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins" (Colossians 1:13). This transfer occurs at the very moment we accept Jesus. There's no period of working for our salvation, no trial period to see if we're going to 'work out.' There are also no tiers to work our way up, starting out with the least possible forgiveness and gradually earning more.

It's a simple all or nothing transformation. If you believe in Jesus, then you instantly have full forgiveness of all of your sins. It's rather amazing, isn't it?
Believing in Jesus yields instant reults | DevotedQuilter.com
Even more amazing is that you don't actually have to do the work for the transformation, because Jesus did it all. "God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it" (Ephesians 2:8, 9). All we have to do is believe. "If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved" (Romans 10:9).

Have you received this instant transformation?

April 22, 2020

Quilting Medley Pattern Bundle

Are you looking for some new quilting patterns? I am excited to announce that my Reach for the Stars pattern is included in the Quilting Medley pattern bundle, which is now available through Pattern Chest.😊 
Reach for the Stars quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
Star blocks have always been among my favourite blocks and Reach for the Stars includes two different star blocks. Plus, it's scrap-friendly, so it's perfect for sewing from your stash, and there's a baby quilt option included along with the throw size shown.
Reach for the Stars quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
Reach for the Stars quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
The Quilting Medley bundle presents a variety of quilt designs that are modern, classic, or whimsical. It includes beginner and intermediate quilt patterns, and baby quilts, throw quilts, and bed quilts. I'm in great company as one of the designers for this bundle. The other designers are Andrea Rennick of Ridge Machine Quilting, Shannon Fraser of Shannon Fraser Designs, Catalina BarcelΓ³ MaimΓ³ of Amarar Creacions, Jen Lopez of Sew Fun Patterns and By The Yard, Jennifer Fulton of Inquiring Quilter, Audrey Mann of The Cloth Parcel and Toni Smith of Quiltoni. Like I said, it's great company 😊
The Quilting Medley bundle is available now through May 12. You can choose to buy only the Starter collection, which includes 4 patterns, or to upgrade to the Bonus Collection, which includes all the patterns in the Starter collection, plus 5 more patterns. Altogether, the 9 patterns in the Quilting Medley bundle are worth $94 USD. Buying early is the cheapest way to get the bonus patterns as the threshold price will rise during the offer's run, and you have to pay more than the current threshold to get the bonus patterns. So head on over to snag your bundle now.

Pattern Chest is new and they plan to bring us time-limited collections of downloadable knitting, sewing, quilting, cosplay, and other fiber-arts patterns. It’s a wonderful way to build your e-library of patterns. I don't knit, but their knitting bundle that is currently available tempts me to start! If you're a knitter, check that out here. I'm looking forward to seeing what other bundles they offer in the future.
As a bonus, part of every Pattern Chest bundle purchase will support an internationally recognized charity πŸ’– Sales of the Quilting Medley bundle will support the fight against COVID-19 through donations to Direct Relief. Direct Relief works in the U.S. and internationally to equip doctors and nurses with life-saving medical resources to care for the world's most vulnerable people.

Remember, the price will go up the longer you wait, so don't wait! Get your bundle today 😊

Buy the Quilting Medley bundle now

Happy sewing!

April 20, 2020

Speaking for Him

Devotion for the Week...

Paul, Aiden, Zachary and I have been watching the show "The West Wing" over the past few months. We've made it to season 5, of 8, so far. Paul and I have watched it before, but it's fun to watch it again now with the boys, especially when we know something is about to happen and we get to watch their reactions.

In the show, CJ Cregg is the White House press secretary, so she does the press briefings. There are frequently scenes of her being asked questions by the other staff members, so they can hear how she'll present issues to the press when they ask their questions. It gives her a chance to refine the words she'll use to be sure that what she says reflects the President's agenda. She is, after all, speaking for him.

In one episode Leo, the chief of staff, tells her she has to issue a retraction of something she said during a briefing, and she has to do it in her own name. "They'll think I wasn't speaking for the President" she objected.

"You weren't," he replied.

That's what came to my mind recently when I read, "We speak for Christ when we plead, 'Come back to God!'" (2 Corinthians 5:20). Isn't it an amazing thought that we speak for Him? It's quite the responsibility, too. Speaking for Him means we need to be sure that what we're saying aligns with His agenda.

His agenda is pretty simple. Peter wrote, "He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent" (2 Peter 3:9). That fits perfectly with what John wrote, too. "For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him" (John 3:16, 17).

We have to ask ourselves, then, do our words support that agenda? Does our message encourage people to repent and come back to God? Or do our words sometimes send the message that God is more interested in judgement and condemnation? While there will certainly be judgement for sin, that isn't God's focus. Remember, "He doesn't want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent." His focus is on encouraging people to repentance and redemption, not on judgement and condemnation.

Whenever we're tempted to pour scorn on someone for their choices, we should remember that God's message is one of redemption, not of condemnation. That doesn't mean we ignore or excuse sin, but it does mean we put emphasis on the possibility of repentance rather than on shaming the individual.
God's message is one of redemption, not condemnation | DevotedQuilter.com
Background quilt is Intersections
How would remembering that we speak for Him change our message? I know I would rather hear "Well done, my good and faithful servant, " (Matthew 25:21) instead of being told I need to issue a retraction for all the times I was speaking for myself rather than for Him.

April 19, 2020

Blue Scrap Basket

I have been wanting to deal with my scraps for a while, but I keep putting it off. Organizing scraps just doesn't sound fun, but using them definitely does and they'll be easier to use if they're not all crammed willy-nilly into bags and boxes. So, when I did my fabric organizing a couple of week ago, I decided I would make scraps baskets like Sandra at MMMQuilts has been making.

A couple of evenings later, I was tired and wanted something completely mindless to sew. Making the scrappy panels for a basket sounded perfect, so I pulled out the scraps and got started. Following Sandra's lead, I used the Scrap Sorting Box tutorial from SoScrappy. I decided to start with a blue basket, both because I figured I'd have plenty of blue scraps and because, well, I love blue. I didn't take any pictures of the process, but I will tell you it made a mess. Remember, my scraps aren't organized at all, so to find the blue scraps I had to dig around in the whole pile. There were bits of fabric everywhere! It was wonderful and mindless, though, and I'm looking forward to doing it again with a different colour 😊 Strangely enough, pulling out enough scraps for a basket didn't change the levels in the bag/boxes at all. How does that work exactly?

It didn't take long to make the panels and then the next day I assembled the basket. I love how it turned out!
Blue scrap basket | DevotedQuilter.com
 The little handle on one side is a cute detail.
Blue scrap basket | DevotedQuilter.com
I quilted my panels with Aurifil 2785 in a quick loopy pattern. They're not very big, so the quilting went really quickly.
Blue scrap basket | DevotedQuilter.com
I used a Northcott navy blue solid for the handle and the lining. The tutorial calls for putting a piece of cardboard in the bottom, between the lining and the outside, but I chose to leave that out. Mostly because I was too lazy to go find a piece of cardboard that would fit, to be honest, but also because I don't plan to be carrying the basket around much, so it doesn't really need the reinforced bottom.
Blue scrap basket | DevotedQuilter.com
It makes a big basket! It's about 7" x 10" and 7" tall, so it's going to hold a lot of scraps. Notice that I haven't filled it yet. Yes, I am still procrastinating the actual sorting of the scraps.

To give you an idea of the size, because visuals are always better than just a listing of measurements, here's a picture with three partially used cones of Aurifil thread in the basket. There's a ton of room around them! And the basket is quite a bit taller than they are, though it's hard to tell that in the picture.
Blue scrap basket | DevotedQuilter.com
For this basket, I tried to stick with true blues, not wandering into the teal range if I could help it. I have plenty of teal scraps, too, so they'll get their own basket. That's probably the one I'll do next. Or maybe green. I have lots of green scraps, too.

While these pictures make it look like spring is well on its way here in Newfoundland, we actually have a snowfall warning for today/tonight 😱 We're supposed to get 25-35 cm of snow, that's about 10-14". As my brother put it, that's a full on winter storm. Nathan and I went for a walk this morning, to get some fresh air and exercise before the snow starts. Spring in Newfoundland never goes in a straight line, lol.

I have my inventory quilt to baste today, so no worries that I'll be bored while the storm keeps us stuck inside. And I could always start that next basket...or work on the guitar quilts I've finally started...or fold the laundry that is waiting...Really, I can't remember the last time I was bored! How are you keeping busy these days?

Linking up with Sarah's Show Me Something Improv

April 16, 2020

Intersections Pattern Release

It's pattern release day! It's also Thursday, in case you've lost track, lol. And yes, the only reason I know that is because my watch also tells me the days of the week. We won't discuss how often I have to check that lately 😏 Anyway, I am happy to finally get to introduce you to Intersections!
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
Intersections was supposed to hang in Island Batik's booth at Spring Quilt Market, but that's not happening now, for obvious reasons. It is in the Island Batik spring/summer catalogue, though, so that's fun. I have said many times before that Island Batik's Foundations line is my favourite and that's the line I used to make Intersections. The Foundations are wonderful because they are mostly tone-on-tone, so they read as solids from a distance, but up close they have wonderful texture.

Intersections uses traditional piecing, foundation paper piecing and raw-edge applique, combined with bold diagonals, to create a fun, modern design.

Of course, I used Aurifil threads in 50 wt to piece and quilt it. I used 5005 for the teal orange peels and 2780 for the blue ones. It was fun to plan out quilting designs that would flow from one orange peel shape to the next so I could quilt entire diagonal lines in one pass.
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
I used 1135 to quilt wishbones in the yellow shapes. It was tricky getting them to turn in the V parts and I don't think any two of the four Vs are quilted exactly the same. In hindsight, I should have done something different at the point of the V, like a large loop maybe, just anything that would have been easier to quilt nicely and consistently. Maybe next time!
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
 I love where the various elements intersect!
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
I quilted a simple stipple in the black, using Aurifil 2692, but it really doesn't show up well in pictures. Trust me, it's there, though.

I had fun taking some up close, emphasize-the-diagonal kind of pictures before I mailed it off to Island Batik.
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
The batting is my go-to Warm and Natural and I used the blue Island Batik as the backing. The lines in the blue remind me of cracks in ice. As always, I love how the quilting looks on the back. Seeing how the different threads show up on the back is one of the reasons I always match my bobbin thread to my top thread.
free motion quilting | DevotedQuilter.com
free motion quilting | DevotedQuilter.com
 As usual, I'm celebrating Intersection's release by offering it at a reduced price now through April 24th.

Buy Intersections now!

This is now my 5th pattern release for 2020, so I'm halfway to my goal of 10 patterns by the end of the year. Whoop whoop! I have plans for more (so many plans, lol), so I'm feeling quite hopeful that I will meet my goal 😊

In completely non-quilting related news, my oldest son, Aiden, released a short EP of traditional songs today. It's called The Quarantine Sessions and you can find it on Spotify, Apple Music and all the other places music can be found these days. You can search for him by name, Aiden Parsons, or by the album title. I am so proud of him for using this time to release some new music! Since I have absolutely zero musical talent (he gets his from his father), I am regularly blown away by his musical ability.

Pick up your copy of Intersections today! And please pin this image to help others find my patterns 😊 Thanks so much for your support!
Intersections quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com

I'm linking up with NTT, TGIFF, Can I Get a Whoop Whoop and Beauties Pageant :)

April 13, 2020

He Finished What He Started

Devotion for the Week...

I hope you had a wonderful Easter Sunday yesterday, even if it was not quite a normal one. Our pastors recorded Good Friday and Easter Sunday services to share on Facebook and while I certainly miss being in the same room together during the service, I find I quite enjoy attending church in my pajamas and doing some hand stitching while I listen 😊

Last week I was thinking about how the curtain in the temple tore from top to bottom when Jesus died. Matthew 27:51 says, "At that moment the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn in two, from top to bottom." The curtain represented humanity's separation from God and only the high priest was allowed to go past the curtain and even he could only do it once a year. Then, when Jesus died, the curtain ripped and the Bible is very specific about it ripping from top to bottom, not bottom to top. This is important because the curtain was about 30 feet tall.

If it had been torn from the bottom up, then perhaps people would have claimed it was done by a follower of Jesus, but it was torn from the top down. No person could have been up there to have torn it. The tear in the curtain, which opened the way to the Holy of Holies, where God's presence resided, was done entirely by God.

Through His death on the cross, Jesus finished what He started when He came to this earth. When Jesus was born, God sent angels to invite the shepherds to meet Jesus. As I point out in my favourite of all the devotions I've written, shepherds at that time were considered to be the lowest of the low, the bottom rung of society. They were the people no one wanted to associate with, and yet God specifically invited them to meet Jesus. God welcomed those who were considered to be the least desirable to signal that no one would be unwelcome in Jesus' presence.

Then, at His death, God ripped apart the curtain that symbolized our separation from Him to show that Jesus' death opened the way for all of us to approach Him. Jesus paid the price for our sins with His death, which removes our separation from God. We can now approach Him boldly, as Hebrew 4:16 says: "So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most."
Everyone is welcome to come to Jesus | DevotedQuilter.com
Background quilt is New Life
Everyone is welcome to come to Jesus and our sins are all covered by the cross. His birth was the start of that mission and He finished it on the cross. Then, with His resurrection, God showed us the power He wields over death and the eternal life we, as believers, will have with Him.

April 11, 2020

Spring Cleaning My Studio

Hello! Welcome to my stop on the Spring Clean Your Studio blog hop, hosted by Cheryl of Muppin Inc. Before we get to my 'before and after,' a couple of things:

  • my Pinwheel Garden pattern has just been released and is available at its introductory price through April 14th. It's a fun, scrappy pattern that includes baby, throw and queen size options. You can get it in my Etsy shop here.
  • I'm teaching a free Introduction to English Paper Piecing workshop tomorrow, the 12th, at 3 pm EST. You can register for the workshop here. I'd love to share my EPP tips and techniques with you.

Okay, on to the studio spring cleaning 😊 I don't actually have a studio, which is both better and worse in terms of mess. Better because I can't let things get truly out of hand, but worse because my sewing stuff is stored all over the house, crammed in here and there, wherever there is space. Some of that 'crammed in' definitely needed work.

I've been storing all my fabric in an old dresser in our spare room, with the colours separated into different drawers. This works okay, except the drawers were all a mess and they were jam packed to the point I could hardly open some of them. Finding a particular fabric could be a frustrating process.
blue fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
green fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
Then there was my Island Batik fabric, which was stored on a set of shelves. While I was an ambassador for Island Batik, I kept those fabrics separate so I could be certain to only use IB fabrics in the ambassador challenges. Now that I'm not an ambassador anymore (oh, why can't there be more hours in the day?), I wanted to integrate those fabrics with the rest of my stash. There was plenty of other mess on the shelves, too. The white drawer unit was supposed to be for Nathan's Lego, though it has been mostly empty the past while and the Lego are all over the place. The batting situation was getting out of hand and the scraps (fabric and batting) are multiplying every time I turn my back.
messy shelves | DevotedQuilter.com
When I started my inventory quilt, I took the blues drawer down to the kitchen and started cutting one piece from each fabric. Then I folded each fabric neatly and stacked it up. I considered trying to fold them uniformly, but they're completely random sizes and I didn't want to bother trying to figure out how to make them all the same. I don't have much patience when it comes to cleaning or organizing, lol.

Around the same time, a friend messaged asking if I have any scrap fabrics she could use for an EPP project and for a crazy quilt project. So, while I was cutting, I also weeded out anything that could go to her. Then everything went back into the drawer, stood on end rather than stacked on top of each other. I added my blue Island Batik fabrics and to be honest, I was amazed how much I could fit into the drawer this way! As a bonus, I can see everything without needing to rummage around.
blue fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
Once that drawer was done, I moved on to the other three. When I emptied the green drawer, I discovered it had been so jammed full that the bottom had slipped out of place, but we were able to glue it back in.
drawer repair | DevotedQuilter.com
Now, there are probably people who look at these and cringe because the fabrics are not arranged in any kind of order. I did consider doing that - very, very briefly. This was definitely a case of "finished is better than perfect" and also of knowing myself well enough to know that I would never maintain that kind of system so there's no point in doing it to begin with.
green and orange fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
neutrals fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
warm colours fabric drawer | DevotedQuilter.com
 I love this new system! I've pulled fabrics for bee blocks since I got these drawers finished and it was so easy to find what I needed! Unfortunately, I couldn't quite fit everything into the drawers, though it was close. Only my browns wouldn't fit anywhere, so they're now on the shelves where the Island Batiks used to be. Neatly, though, so it looks better than it did. There's not much room for more fabric in the drawers, so depending on how my sewing and stash accumulation are balanced, I may need to make some adjustments in the future.

Then it was time to tackle the shelves. By moving the Island Batik fabrics into the drawers, I had freed up quite a bit of space. I also gave my crazy-quilting friend all my flannel scraps and quite a bit of old polycotton that I had been given and knew I'd never use. She's quite happy to mix anything and everything into her crazy quilt and I'm quite happy to see it get used rather than taking up space on my shelf. We also moved Nathan's Lego unit into his room (we've done some organizing in there, too).

I managed to fit a lot of the batting into the boxes. One box is full of unopened packs, while another box is stuffed full of scraps. I have so many batting scraps that they wouldn't all fit, so some of the larger ones are stacked on the shelf and in bags on top of the boxes. It's not perfect, but it's a lot better than it was.
shelf | DevotedQuilter.com
One shelf has a bunch of UFOs, mostly tops in need of quilting, and a few small finished quilts. Then there are the scraps. I had high hopes of getting 'something' done with them in time for this post, but that just didn't happen. The big box on top of the shelving unit, the two red shoeboxes, the clear bin and an overflowing grocery bag at the bottom are all full of scraps. I finally have a plan, though! Sandra, at MMMQuilts, has been making scrap baskets off and on for a while and I'm going to follow her lead. Thanks, Sandra! The tutorial for the scrap baskets is here. The baskets will use up scraps (both fabric and batting) and then they'll be pretty scrap storage 😊

The last bit of organization I did was to separate my 2 ½" strips into lights, mediums and darks. I don't have any fancy storage solutions for them, so into an Amazon box, a grocery bag and a ziptop bag they went. I wasn't looking to spend any money on this organization project. Maybe these will end up in the shoeboxes once the scraps are in their pretty new baskets. In the meantime, having them separated like this will make them easier to use next time I need strips.
fabric strips | DevotedQuilter.com
There are still plenty of organizing projects I could tackle, but I'm pleased just to have my fabric done. Now it's time to sew up some scrap storage baskets...organizing by sewing, that's one kind of organizing I can get behind!

If you're in need of more organizing/cleaning inspiration, check out the rest of the blog hop participants. I've found a few tips I plan to put to use the next time I feel a surge of organizing energy (it might be a while, though, lol). The hop is going all through the month of April, so there's plenty of inspiration still to come, too. Here's the full schedule:

April 1 - Sam Hunter - http://www.huntersdesignstudio.com
April 2 - Marian Pena - http://www.seamstobesew.com
April 3 - Jennifer Fulton - http://www.inquiringquilter.com/questions
April 4 - Martha Wolf - http://Www.pinwheelprodns.com
April 5 - Jennifer Strauser - http://www.dizzyquilter.com
April 6 - Steph Carton - http://www.theelimonster.com/blog
April 7 - Simone Fisher - http://www.simonequilts.com/blog
April 8 - Kate Colleran - http://www.seamslikeadream.com
April 9 - Carlina Moore - http://www.alwaysexpectmoore.com
April 10 - Jen Frost - http://www.faithandfabricdesign.com/blog
April 11 - Leanne Parsons - http://www.devotedquilter.com
April 12 - Becca Fenstermaker - http://www.prettypiney.com/blog
April 13 - Sarah Myers - http://www.quilted-diary.com
April 14 - Mitzi Redd - http://www.reddhomestead.com
April 15 - Jeanette Larson - http://www.Jenonthefarm.com
April 16 - Camille Ainsworth - http://www.stitchinthenw.com
April 17 - Becky Philips Jorgenson - http://www.patchworkposse.com
April 18 - Bobbie Gentili - http://www.geekybobbin.com/category/blog
April 19 - Janellea Macbeth - http://www.janelleamacbeth.com/blog/
April 20 - Lisa Ruble - http://lovetocolormyworld.blogspot.com
April 21 - Debra Davis - http://www.tuning-my-heart.com/blog
April 22 - Rona Herman - http://www.Ronatheribbiter.com
April 23 - Sue Griffiths - http://www.duckcreekmountainquilting.com
April 24 - Sarah Ruiz- http://www.saroy.net/
April 25 - Jessica Caldwell - http://www.desertbloomquilting.com/
April 26 - Tammy Silvers - http://tamarinis.typepad.com
April 27 - Ebony Love - http://www.lovebugstudios.com/blog
April 28 - Cheryl Sleboda - http://blog.muppin.com

Thanks for stopping by!

April 07, 2020

Pinwheel Garden Pattern Release

I am excited to release my Pinwheel Garden pattern today! I especially love that it's a scrap-friendly pattern, perfect for all the stash sewing we're doing these days 😊 Also, let's just take a moment to enjoy all that gorgeous greenery in this picture. All I've got these days is snow and, while I do love winter, it's time for a change now. I'm getting anxious for flowers!
Pinwheel Garden quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
Pinwheel Garden was originally published in Make Modern last year as a throw size and now I've expanded the pattern to also include baby and queen size options. How many scraps do you have? That's what size Pinwheel Garden you should make...well, maybe...I probably have enough scraps for three queen size versions. How about you?

I love making use of really tiny scraps, so Pinwheel Garden includes some of them, along with larger scraps and yardage.
Pinwheel Garden quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
To celebrate the release, Pinwheel Garden is available through April 14th at its introductory price.

Buy Pinwheel Garden now

Pinwheel Garden quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com
On another note, did you see that I'm holding a free Introduction to English Paper Piecing workshop? The workshop will be a live video in a private FB group on Sunday the 12th, and the replay will be available in the group afterwards, so sign up even if you won't be able to make it live. Sign up here and I'll email you the link to the private group 😊 I'd love to get to share my love of EPP with you!

After you pick up your copy of Pinwheel Garden, I'd love it if you'd pin this image to help other quilters find it, too. Thanks for your help spreading the word!
Pinwheel Garden quilt pattern | DevotedQuilter.com

April 06, 2020


Devotion for the Week...

We had a night of freezing rain and wind last week and woke to see the trees coated in ice. Zach told me that branches had fallen off the big tree outside his bedroom window. "And not just small branches, either," he said. "There's one big branch broken off, but it's still caught in the tree, stuck in the other branches." That branch is still stuck there, days later, dangling in the tree, but not connected to the trunk.

Years ago, someone told me that the most effective way to dry out wood for a fire, if you're cutting the trees down yourself, is to leave the branches attached. That way the leaves will continue to draw the sap from the tree until there's nothing left. When the leaves die off, the wood will be dry. Early the next spring, I saw this in action when a homeowner along my walk pruned branches off a small tree and left them lying on the edge of his property. The branches suddenly leafed out a couple of days later, even though they weren't connected to anything. What a strange sight that was! The leaves lasted quite a while on the sap stored in the branches, but eventually they withered.

These are strange days, when out of our love for the people around us, we're staying as far away from each other as we can. Officials started out by calling it 'social distancing,' but now they've changed the name to 'physical distancing' to reflect how critical it is that we stay connected socially, even as we stay apart physically. We're being encouraged to check up on seniors and those who live alone, to call or message family often, and to get creative with ways to show we care when we can't just gather around the same table for a meal or a cup of tea. Every call and message, every visit through the window of a retirement home and every video chat to share a coffee is a way to keep those social connections firmly attached.

Jesus used the analogy of branches connected to a vine to demonstrate the importance of our connection to Him, too. In John 15, Jesus said, "Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father" (John 15:5-8).

Our connection to Jesus is vital to our well-being, especially when fear and anxiety run rampant around us. He is our source of peace and hope. He said in John 14:27 "I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give." We need that peace today, for sure.
We need to be connected to other people and to Jesus | DevotedQuilter.com
Background quilt is Multiplication
Thankfully, our ability to connect with Jesus isn't affected by the physical distancing measures currently in place. We can still pray and read our Bibles. We can still listen to or play worship music. We can't gather for services, but churches are getting creative and livestreaming services and those services are being watched by people who haven't set foot in a church in years.

Just like a branch needs a connection with the vine or the tree to survive, we need physical connections with other people and a spiritual connection with Jesus. How are we doing at nurturing both these days?

April 02, 2020

TGIFF - Inventory Churn and an Announcement

Welcome to TGIFF! Wait, what day of the week is it? We're all staying home every day now, like many of you, so the days are really running together. Of course, this would be normal for us if it were summer vacation, but then we'd still be going to church on Sundays to keep ourselves oriented in the week a little at least. Somehow watching church on a livestream in my pajamas doesn't seem to have the same effect πŸ˜„ It is time for TGIFF, though, so let's celebrate our finishes for the week!

Somehow, even with all the time in the world to sew, I finished my quilt top for today's post this afternoon and the post needs to be published just as soon as I finish typing it. Procrastination at its finest.

Before I share my finished quilt top, I'm excited to announce that I'm going to be teaching a free Introduction to English Paper Piecing pop-up workshop! It's going to be a live workshop in a private Facebook group, so if you want to join the group, just go here to sign up. The live workshop will be Sunday, April 12th at 3 pm EST and the replay will be available in the group so sign up even if you can't make it live. I can't wait to share my EPP tips and techniques with you! Don't forget to sign up!

Now, here's my newly finished Churn quilt top 😊 You can get Churn as a PDF or a printed pattern. We tried for outdoor pictures, but a flimsy blows around in even the slightest wind and it just wasn't happening today.
Churn quilt | DevotedQuilter.com
This is my third time making Churn and you can see the original here and the baby version here.

I made this version as part of the Inventory Quilt Project, so I cut only one piece from every fabric and it represents my entire blue and teal stash (except for a few novelty prints that I chose to leave out). Because I made the HSTs using the two-at-a-time method, each of those fabrics is in the quilt twice, but they did start out as a single square of each. I have to admit that it's a little busier looking than I was expecting, though a friend told me it reminds her of an old patchwork quilt.

These sunny yellow churn dashes have been making me ridiculously happy these past couple of grey days.
Churn quilt | DevotedQuilter.com
I cut one piece from each of the yellow and pink fabrics, too, though they don't represent my whole stash of those colours. I love how the quilt mixes fabrics I've had for years (close to two decades for some of them) with fabrics that are brand new. That pink handprint fabric is from Mister Domestic's Playroom collection, while the blue with pink splotches below it has been in my stash for.e.ver.
Churn quilt | DevotedQuilter.com
There are loads of Island Batik fabrics included, plenty of them from the Blueberry Patch line I used to make my Blue Sparkler quilt last year. I love that the quilt has blues from very, very light to very, very dark and everything in between.
Once it's quilted, this will be my Hands 2 Help Comfort Quilt challenge quilt, which I'll be using for the caregiver's quilt initiative. This initiative seeks to give quilts to caregivers in our communites, who work tirelessly caring for family members and deserve a little something special for themselves. This will be a quilty hug for a friend's mom, who cares for her adult daughter with Down's Syndrome 😊
Churn quilt | DevotedQuilter.com
Here's one last peek at a sunny churn dash 😊
Churn quilt | DevotedQuilter.com
Don't forget to get your copy of Churn (print or PDF) and to sign up for the Introduction to EPP workshop!

Okay, now link up your finishes for the week, then visit some of the other links to celebrate with them. Stay healthy and wash your hands!

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