2015 ~ A Year in Review

2015 Year in Review : Fresh Lemons Quilts

It’s the last day of 2015! The last two weeks have gone by in a blur. My parents came to visit for Christmas, then we went out of town with more family for a post-Christmas trip to Michigan. For those who were curious, my kids loved their Maker’s Totes. I love the holidays, but I am always ready for the calm that January brings.

I thought it would be fun to do a little 2015 wrap up, and then look forward to 2016. I made 11 quilts in 2015.

2015 Year in Review : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Five were gifts: Hanna Hearts, Spidey, Scrappy Kaleidoscope, Home Run, and Nautical.

Two were quilt alongs: Scrap Plus and Snowflake.

Two were for new patterns in my shop: Poinsettia and Four Square.

I also sewed quite a few bags in 2015. All but one of these comes from a pattern by Noodlehead…I guess you can say I’m a fan!

2015 Year in Review : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Besides the Scrap Plus and Snowflake quilt alongs, I also created a few additional tutorials for all of you: Star Bunting, Posy Strip Pillow, and the Fresh Spool Series.

Fresh Spool Series : Fresh Lemons Quilts

My kids started their very first quilting bee ~ Not Your Mama’s Bee. It’s been a fun experience creating with them every month!

Not Your Mama's Bee : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I continued to enjoy the honor of being a BERNINA Ambassador, and contributing a bit on the We All Sew blog. A vintage friend also joined my family – my “new-to-me” Singer Featherweight.

Singer Featherweight: Fresh Lemons Quilts

Of course, as always, I had much bigger plans in my head for the year. But I am happy with what I accomplished. For next year, I hope to share more quilts, more patterns, more quilt alongs, more tutorials…simply put, more bright, fresh inspiration! I hope you will continue to follow along. You can always sign up for email notifications so you don’t miss a post.

I want to thank all of you for visiting this year. This blog of mine had over 2.6 million pages loaded in 2015! I am continually humbled by your support and kind words as I share my quilting journey. Here’s to a great 2016!

Kits + Quilting

Moda Fabrics Modern Building Blocks : Fresh Lemons Quilts

With the kids in school, it’s been a remarkably productive couple of days over here. The house is clean, dinner has been planned ahead each night, I’ve actually gone to the gym (shocking!!) and I’ve even spent busy chunks of time in my sewing room.

Moda Fabrics Modern Building Blocks : Fresh Lemons Quilts

This week I also received a great package in the mail. Last week I ordered Moda Fabric’s Modern Building Blocks pattern and kit. I remember seeing this quilt at market and it was one of those stop-you-in-your-tracks moments for me. I love Moda’s Bella Solids and the colors in this quilt, along with the layout of the blocks, really spoke to me. I cannot wait to make this (even if it will have to wait in line a bit until I’m done with other commitments).

Moda Fabrics Modern Building Blocks : Fresh Lemons Quilts

Also, I love the packaging of this kit. I was joking on Instagram that whoever came up with it deserves a promotion! Wouldn’t this make a beautiful birthday or Christmas gift for a quilter? (Husbands…hint hint!)

Moda Fabrics Modern Building Blocks : Fresh Lemons Quilts

The inside has all the fabrics, layout and assembly directions, as well as this handy set of double sided cards with all the block patterns.

Moda Fabrics Modern Building Blocks : Fresh Lemons Quilts

You can buy this kit at a few of my sponsors:

Pink Chalk Fabrics (pattern only, no fabric)
The Loopy Ewe (fabric kit with pattern)
Fat Quarter Shop (fabric kit with pattern)
Fat Quarter Shop (fabric kit with pattern – PREORDER if link above sold out)
Fat Quarter Shop (pattern only, no fabric)
Lark Cottons

So, besides drooling over this kit for the last few days, I’ve also been working on my sadly neglected Arkansas Traveler quilt! I basted it yesterday while watching Call the Midwife on Netflix. Wow, what a great show (even if it does make me cry at every episode!).

Arkansas Traveler : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I started quilting in the blue fabric areas using a coordinating blue thread I had on hand – Aurifil’s Color Me Happy by V & Co’s set. It’s #2775 in a 50wt (orange spool). I’m still debating whether or not to quilt the cream fabrics (with an off white thread) or leave them unquilted, giving it a slightly poofy look.

Arkansas Traveler : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I’m using my Bernina Stitch Regulator (BSR) which I just realized I’ve been using for 5 years! Obviously I’ve had a lot of time to practice with it. I’ve had some people ask for tips on using it.

• I don’t go too slow or too fast. I try to find a nice, middle of the road speed and stick to it. It might help to get some music (not too crazy now!) with a consistent rhythm and play that while you sew, to get in a nice groove.

• I use Bernina’s single hole stitch plate when stitching straight lines.

• For a while I found that when I was stopping stitching (like to remove a pin), I was taking my foot off the pedal while still moving the fabric slightly. Not good, this leads to messed up stitches. Stop completely before taking your foot off the pedal. When you stop moving the fabric, the stitching will stop as well. (At least does when I use BSR 2).

• If you are feeling like your fabric is getting stuck and you have to pull it (leading to messed up stitches), lessen your pressure foot setting. I’ve had to do this with some fabrics that just didn’t seem to slide well under my foot. Other’s swear by using something called the Supreme Slider on their machine. I don’t have one though.

• And then just practice, practice, practice. When I first sat down to use the BSR I thought I would turn my machine on and suddenly my quilting would be perfect. Um, it wasn’t. lol I needed to still practice. If you still aren’t getting the results you think you should be getting, ask if you can bring your machine into your dealer and have them watch you quilt on your machine. I’m sure they will have tips as well.

Arkansas Traveler : Fresh Lemons Quilts

I’m halfway finished with the blue and about to go upstairs and get cracking again. I can’t wait to (finally!) share this completed quilt with you soon!

Lucky Spool’s Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Lucky Spool’s Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making in the mail. I finally had some time yesterday to sit down and look through the book…and I’m very excited by what I saw!

Lucky Spool’s Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making is a collection of 10 “Workshops” (or chapters) that cover everything from Color to Curves to Improvisational Piecing to Quilting. Check out the chapter listing.

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Each workshop begins with an expert spending between 4 and 12 pages talking about their subject.

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

These lessons are then followed by a pattern that is based on their topic. I love this quilt by Kari Vojtechovsky in her Principles of Color Design Workshop.

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

There are a lot of names I know and respect in this book – Jacquie Gering teaching The Alternate Grid…

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Denyse Schmidt teaching Improvisational Patchwork…

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Penny Layman teaching Paper Piecing…

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Angela Walters teaching Modern Quilting…

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

The end of the book contains A Study of 50 Modern Quilts, starting off with one of my favorite examples of Modern Traditionalism by Victoria Findlay Woolfe, Double Edged Love.

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Each page has a grouping of quilts, organized by design and color.

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

And the reason I received this book early, my This Way, That Way quilt was included!

Lucky Spool's Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making

Although I haven’t made any patterns from this book yet, I really enjoyed digging into it yesterday. I think Lucky Spool’s Essential Guide to Modern Quilt Making would be an awesome resource for quilt guild libraries, as well as home libraries. If you are interested in Modern Quilting techniques, I highly recommend checking it out.

Headed to Market

Flutter by Laura Gunn

This afternoon I head to Quilt Market in Pittsburgh. If you are attending, I hope you will stop by the F+W booth Friday at 11:45. I’ll be there signing copies of Vintage Quilt Revival! For those of you not able to go, I thought I’d post some pretty fabric here for you today. :)

Flutter by Laura Gunn

I received this fabric last week from designer Laura Gunn – her latest line Flutter for Michael Miller Fabrics. Last Winter I bought some of Laura’s bird prints from her Etsy Shop. I used them to decorate my guest room, so she knew I was going to be excited when I saw her new line. I can’t wait to use these to make some coordinating pillows!

Flutter by Laura Gunn

I am planning on pairing them with some of Laura’s Painter’s Canvas that I have on hand. Most likely I’ll keep in simple with either log cabins or just squares.

I also wanted to share that I officially have two more patterns available in print.

Patterns by Fresh Lemons Quilts

You can find those in my pattern shop, along with PDF downloads. Any printed patterns purchased this week will ship once I’m back from market on Monday. If you are a shop and would like wholesale information, just email me!

Creativebug : Basic Line Drawing class

Finally, I started Lisa Congdon’s Creativebug class this week. I decided it would be fun to do some drawing with my 7 year old daughter. That’s hers up top with all the colors. She is loving it! I’m not sure she has ever spent so much time on one picture. And I am not someone comfortable with drawing, but Lisa really breaks it down into simple idea and shapes. I highly recommend it!

See you all next week!