Monday, June 30, 2014

Row by Row Experience Shop Hop

Tomorrow's the big day - it's the beginning of the 2014 Row by Row Experience Shop Hop!  Many quilt shops from 31 states all over the country are participating and we're "Sew Happy" to be one of them!  We know you'll want to purchase one of our 4" x 6" fabric plates (above) to commemorate your visit to Little Quilts. Fabric Plates are perfect for tote bags or quilt labels or purchase one from each shop you visit and make a memory quilt.
Be sure to ask for a free row pattern at each participating shop.  Our "Flower Garden" row is pictured below.  Kits for our row will be available.
Be the first to finish a quilt including row patterns from at least eight different shops and you could win 25 fat quarters!
Plan to visit lots of shops during your travels this summer, but make us first on your list!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Our Hats Are Off...Loving through fabric

A different style of memory quilt.. We're all familiar with Tshirt quilts but how about a 'hat brim' quilt. Barbara made this quilt out of her husband's favorite hats. He recently passed away from a long battle with Alzheimer's. He loved his favorite Tshirts so much she couldn't make a quilt for her son and daughter, as they were literally worn to threads. He loved hats a lot too and had some favorites. Barbara took them apart. She said that was the hardest part...then she machine stitched them to her
husband's jeans that she cut up. Barbara loves black & white fabric and added that to the sashing. What a beautiful tribute! 

Friday, June 27, 2014

Fruity Friend Challenge

Ann’s quilting group goes away every year for a Mother’s Day retreat. This is their 33rd year. Last year one of the gals brought in the infamous ‘fruit ladies’ fabric and issued a challenge to the group. They were give a half a yard of the fruit ladies sitting on the beach and were told to make anything from it. Ann made this darling throw by adding a colorful Jelly Roll or coordinating colors. Looks like a perfect match and Ann machine quilted it herself. It’s a gift for a special friend!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

 Lucy Boston lived in a remarkable old house known as The Manor, in the village of Hemingsford Grey, Cambridgshire. The ancient Norman Manor house, built in about 1130, has the distinction of being the oldest continually inhabited houses in Britain and much of the original house remains virtually intact in spite of various changes over nine hundred years.

The Manor lies along this river, the Great Ouse.  It was from this river that Lucy first saw the house.  After Lucy’s marriage failed and while her son, Peter, was a student at Cambridge in 1939, Lucy heard that a house was for sale in nearby Hemingsford Grey.  Remembering back to a time in 1915 (Lucy would have been in her early twenties at the time) when she had glimpsed (and never forgot!), from the river, a seemingly derelict farmhouse sitting tranquilly in a field beside the river, Lucy assumed it was the house that must be for sale.  She took a taxi out to Hemingsford Grey, drove along the river road until she found the house, knocked on the door and announced to the owners that she would be interested in buying it.  Just imagine her surprise, not to mention the surprise of the owners who had only that morning decided to sell the house!  Lucy never did find out which house had been advertised that she should have gone to see that day.  

Between 1939 to 1941, with the help of architect Hugh Hughes, the whole house was restored back to being as near as possible to the Norman part.  Lucy’s son, Peter, also an architect was off to war during the time, but became involved with some of the restoration when he returned.

The Manor became the focus and inspiration for Lucy’s creativity for the rest of her life.  Much of her time was spent developing the beautiful gardens which are surrounded by a moat and have topiary, old roses, award-winning irises and herbaceous borders.

Music was also very important to Lucy.  After her divorce while she was in Austria taking art lessons she accumulated a huge collection of 78 rpm classical gramophone records.  After The Manor was restored, the upstairs hall which was full of atmosphere and echoes of nine hundred years of family life was turned into a music hall and Lucy offered gramophone record recitals twice a week during World War II to the RAF.  The 1929 EMG gramophone is still in use in this room.

By the mid 1950’s the house was being described by Lucy and sketched by Peter in a series of children’s books and that is when the public’s fascination with the place began.  An autobiographical book, “Memory In a House”, describes Lucy’s life after moving to Hemingsford Grey, including the renovation and restoration of The Manor.  It was written when Lucy was 81 and has been described as an extended love letter to the house.

Lucy continued writing (and quilting!) and lived in the house until she died in 1990 at age 97.  Following her death, her son Peter lived in The Manor with his wife Diana until his death in November 1999. Currently, daughter-in-law, Diana, has taken over responsibility for the manor’s upkeep – a job she describes as both a burden and a privilege.
Diana Boston, daughter-in-law of Lucy Boston

Times change, but the house remains true to its Norman heritage.  The main thing that has changed is that back when Lucy took her taxi ride out to the house, the only traffic on the road was a man and his horse. Today the house sits on a very busy road.  Both the house and garden are open to the public. Click here  for more information about the house and special events that are scheduled.

Patchwork of the Crosses posts every Thursday.  Click here if you're viewing this for the first time - it will take you back to the first post in April.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

First from the heart

Sarah finished her first quilt and it is adorable! It’s a birthday gift for her son who turns one this month. Sarah is planning to use the quilt for family pictures that are being taken this week.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Row by Row Experience Shop Hop

The Row by Row Experience Shop Hop is new for us - this is our first year to participate - and we hope you're as excited about it as we are!  There is a whole line of fabric designed around this year's theme "Sew A Season".  The fabric is here already and we've already sold out of the "Sew Happy" fabric plates (don't worry, we're getting more!).  Both are perfect for making all sorts of tote bags and purses.  These are samples made from the Zippy Strippy pattern.  Looking forward to seeing all of you soon!  Remember, the dates for the Shop Hop are July 1 - Sept. 2.  

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Happy National Quilting in Public Day from Little Quilts.

Happy National Quilting in Public Day from Little Quilts. 
Yes, indeed, today is the day!  Ain't that perfect.. first day of summer, too.  Time to be outside but we can't stop thinking about and/or doing quilting.  No problem! You even have a designated day, so how about spending a day at the beach or the park or at home stitching on a favorite project outside!
Here’s a few of Mary Ellen’s antique doll quilt collection in a sweet display outside with some vintage dollies.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

June Fabric Packs are now available for pick-up in the shop.  If you're receiving them by mail, they were sent out June 17 and you should have them shortly.
These are the fabrics I used for today's block.

My block turned out like this:

This is one of my favorite blocks.  It will require a little expertise with fussy cutting!  It's actually a little difficult to see the individual honeycomb units, so look carefully!   You will notice the center cross honeycombs are cut from the center of the brown stripe.  Four of the outer brown honeycombs were cut with the center of the acrylic template on the line between the brown stripe and the right tan stripe. The other four were cut with the template on the line between the brown stripe and the left tan stripe.  I love the way this block looks so totally different from the previous blocks we've done!  Save the leftovers - we'll be making more blocks from all these fabrics.

If you're reading this for the first time, click here to get to the beginning of our Patchwork of the Crosses Blog Along.

Click here to check out information on fussy cutting with Inklingo.  Inklingo is a quick and accurate way to print honeycomb shapes right onto your fabric with an Inkjet printer.

Click here to go to our website if you need additional honeycomb papers, glue refills, or other supplies.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Parade of quilts, by one maker...

Linda was the grand prize winner from the 2014 Greater Atlanta Quilt Shop Hop. She won a $100 gift certificate from  each of the 10 quilt shops.
 Linda makes quilts and donates them to numerous charities. She donates quilts to "Quilts For Kids" - the North Georgia Chapter, the Center for the Visually Impaired (those quilts have to be red, white, and black); and various auctions for children's hospitals. How great was it that she won? We love that she came in and shared some of her quilts. She is self taught and quilts all her quilts on her home sewing machine - her Bernina 440. Linda doesn't make any designs except circles! Wish you could see these in person. The smaller quilts go to the preemie units at nearby hospitals.

The panel with the floral motif was a panel print she cut apart and put back together with other coordinated.
She stopped in the shop to buy more of the Kaffe Fassett shot cotton stripes for a commission piece. to  make this quilt a second time.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Row by Row Experience Shop Hop

We finished our row for the Row by Row Shop Hop Experience and couldn't wait to show you!  The theme for this year's Shop Hop is "Pick a Season" and we chose to feature the beautiful flowers of spring and summer in our Flower Garden row.  Visit Little Quilts anytime between July 1 - Sept. 2 to receive a free pattern for our row.  Kits will be available - preorder a kit today and it will be ready for you when you pick up your pattern. Patterns are only available to those visiting the shop so make sure we end up on your travel itinerary! 
Be the first to bring a finished quilt including rows from at least eight different shops to Little Quilts and you will win 25 fat quarters!

One of our customers, Pat, participated in the 2013 Row by Row Experience.  Her son lives in New York City and travels throughout New York and Pennsylvania.  He stopped at seventeen different quilt shops in his travels picking up row patterns for his mother. Pat picked her favorite eight row to make this fun quilt! 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Take a Look

Stephanie just finished the Quilting ala Carte Classes where she made a quilt for her son. This is her second quilt- a beautiful scrappy quilt from 30’s prints – that she made for a friend. Stephanie does her own quilting, too! Looks like she learned her lessons well!  

Friday, June 13, 2014

Embroidery Sunbonnet Sue

Such a sweet Sunbonnet Sue quilt! Joyce embroidered all the blocks and chose a simple setting to highlight them.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

It’s time to start thinking about background fabric.  Lucy Boston used a plain white fabric for the background of her quilt, but I chose a soft creamy background with a subtle vine print for mine because  I liked the added visual texture and softness of the print.
Folio Basic by Henry Glass & Co., Inc.
Whatever you decide to use, be sure to pick something neutral that will show off your beautiful blocks to advantage. 
Background honeycombs need to be added around each block –that’s 24 honeycombs per block. Just a word of wisdom:  Don’t get caught up in the creativity of making the blocks and leave all the background honeycombs for the end.  They’re way to boring to do all at once – better to space them out and add them as you go!

It’s always difficult to calculate exactly how much background fabric to purchase, but if you’re planning to make a quilt the size of the original quilt, 88” x 99”, you will need approximately 8 – 8½ yd. after washing.   If you’re planning a smaller version, purchase accordingly.  The Henry Glass Folio fabric I’m using for my background is available on our website – click here to order by the yard.  If you prefer a background fabric closer to the original quilt, I would recommend either Kona White (pure white) or Kona Snow (soft, antique white) both of which are available by calling the shop.

You will not need to fussy cut the background fabric.  I found it easy to cut my fabric into 2½” strips and then subcut using the acrylic honeycomb template.  There will be almost no waste with this method.  Of course, Inklingo is ideal for this step allowing you to print large quantities of perfect honeycomb shapes onto your background fabric quickly and accurately on your Inkjet printer.  Check out Inklingo here for more information.
Once shapes are cut, glue baste them to the papers and they’re ready to add to your quilt.
Don’t forget:   If you need additional honeycomb paper pieces or glue refills, they are available on our website.  Honeycomb papers are also available in economical 600/pack or 1200/pack bulk packages.

For those of you new to Patchwork of the Crosses, click here to follow the Blog Along from the beginning.  It’s not too late to join in the fun!

June fabric packs are available - don't forget to stop by the shop to pick up your pack!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Redwork Splendor

Lana shared this darling Redwork project that she just finished. Pattern is Winter Wonderland by Crabapple Hill.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Row by Row Experience Shop Hop

Our fabric plate says it all. . . we love quilting and are "Sew Happy" to be participating in the Row by Row Experience Shop Hop this summer. If you're planning a trip to Georgia, be sure to include us in your itinerary. Collect Fabric Plates from all the shops you visit - use them to make tote bags or labels for the back of your Shop Hop quilt. They make a nice reminder of the shops you visited during your travels!

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Lovely stories and photos

Staff member Linda R. shared several things she inherited from her Grandmother and Great-Grandmother. The antique spool chest holds original spools of thread that came in the box and have been passed down in Linda’s family.

  Linda’s Grandmother and Great-Grandmother worked together on this beautiful antique hooked rug. When Linda brought it home with her, there were several holes in it that Linda wanted to get repaired. She took it to an Oriental rug store for suggestions on how to fix it and the little Chinese lady who was helping her took the wool scarf she was wearing and cut it into strips to make the repairs for Linda! The finished rug is now framed and hanging and looks good as new!

Friday, June 06, 2014

A giving Heart x 2.

Bobbie came in with her service dog to show us her quilt. She made this quilt using Little Darlings fabric from Little Quilts. Bobbie makes quilts and donates them to a program called "Baby Love" at the Family Resource Center & Health Department in Bryson City NC. What a great gift for a struggling family..... Quilts make the best comforters.

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Patchwork of the Crosses

It's time for another block!  These are the fabrics I used:

You can use the same fabrics and get totally different looks.  For example, here are two blocks I made using the same fabrics.

It's fun to play with the fabrics and see what you can come up with. 
For both of these blocks, I used a narrow stripe from the gray striped fabric for the center fussy-cut honeycombs.  Cut conservatively and  be sure to save the rest of this fabric as we'll be using it again in another block - it's just one of those fabrics that you want to use every square inch of!

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Churn Dash for baby

Sharon just finished a great baby quilt for a co-workers new grandbaby. Very cute…


Monday, June 02, 2014

Words To Live By

Jean is trying to keep up with her “Words to Live By” block of the month. She’s doing the wool version. To make the words stand out a little more, Jean is embroidering them instead of inking. What a beautiful block, Jean!
Designed by Lisa Bonjean of Primitive Gatherings. Jean is showing the "joy" block