Tag Archives: quilting

Tu-Na Quilts: Let’s Make Elephants

Here’s what my elephant quilt looked like when the project stalled in March.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Here’s how it traveled to North Dakota with me so that it could be finished.

1a

I labeled each block and each row and used lots of Clover clips to hold the labels in place. Then all the sewn rows and the ones needing sewing were put into a new gallon Ziploc bag.

 

The trip took three days and I didn’t want any pieces getting lost or mixed up.

2a

I also clipped each row together and included my hand-drawn pattern. I had bought a package of 100 Clover clips when I was in Bismarck last summer (using a 50% off coupon from JoAnns) and took half of them to Arizona in the fall. Now they’ve come back to my ND home. I sure hope I remember to take them back to AZ with me or I’ll be buying more down there.

 

This quilt is for my best friend’s granddaughter. That baby just turned 6 months old and I might have to make it larger if I dawdle any longer.

6a

I’ve already got 7 rows sewn. See how I labeled these rows. for transport? I sewed the paper label with the row number on the end of each finished row using a large stitch length. It only took a couple of minutes to do this and it is better than using pins.

 

My goal for this week is to move this project forward by:

  1. Finish sewing the chevron rows.
  2. Deciding whether to make the quilt a tad wider. I have most of the blocks made already if I decide to do so. Currently it measures 40″ x 56″. By adding two more blocks to each row (which completes the next peak in the chevron), it would be 48″ x 56″. What would you do?
  3. Sewing up those three elephants and their background strip.
  4. Sewing the top together.
  5. Sandwiching the layers.
  6. Free-motion quilting it. I already have a plan.

This list may be a bit ambitious (realistically I may only get thru number 3) as I also have to sew up and mail the three May Bee blocks this week. In addition, I am Queen for one Bee next month so I need to sew up a couple of test blocks and prepare a post.

To motivate me and keep me going, I thought I’d link with Em’s Scrapbag for Moving It Forward (love the tag line for her blog—”When life falls to pieces, make a quilt”).

And in case any of you are transporting quilt blocks, I’ll link with Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl for Tips and Tutorials Tuesday since I have some tips on keeping your blocks and rows organized. (Button is on the sidebar).

What I Learned Today:

  1. I need something or someone to get me motivated.
  2. Cold coffee tastes really good. I have a habit of pouring myself a cup and finding it three hours later.

Question: Would you make this quilt wider or not?

Other linky parties that I’m attending: Midweek Makers at Quilt Fabrication and Let’s Bee Social on Sew Fresh Quilts and Works in Progress at Silly Mama Quilts.

Tu-Na Quilts: Welcome to the Third Week of the 2017 New Quilt Blogger’s Hop

Come on in, sit a spell, and explore my blog for some fun stories and interesting photos as well as quilting goodness. Hi! My name is Karen but I also go by Tu-Na or Tu-Na Quilts or Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats if you want to get very formal. My name came about during a conversation with my grandsons. I wrote my very first blog post about that conversation last April and you can read it here. If you want, you can read more about me here or check out the introductory post that I wrote for last year’s New Quilt Blogger’s Hop here.

I’ve been very busy with family responsibilities the past several months and my first blogiversary came and went without my notice.  However, I’ve got some fun improvements and a belated party planned for my blog in the coming months so stay tuned.

I made my first quilt many years ago when I was 16 and wrote my second blog post about it which you can read here. Almost all the quilts that I make, I give away.

LH141a

This fun quilt went to live with one of my grandsons since he loves the Little House books.

You can read more about this Little House quilt here and see the block that I designed for it.

Speaking of designing, I designed this coneflower block for last years Cloud 9 Block Hop.

03aaa

I call this block “Anne’s Flower.” It is easy to sew using a method that I call piecelique–meaning some piecing and some applique. Don’t let that curved stem scare you; it’s easy.

The free pattern for my coneflower is still available on that post here. I am constructing a quilt gallery in the tabs at the top where you can see other quilt finishes including my mini laundry day quilt with this 4 inch mini-mini of a lighthouse.

10a

Twenty one years ago, I took a quilting class where I learned how to use a rotary cutter and ruler which revolutionized quilting for me. I wanted to make a quilt for me since I didn’t have a good quilt that fit our queen size bed. I remember attending that class and sharing my strips of fabric with other quilters as they shared theirs with me. This class taught me the importance of accurate cutting.

I took those strips and sewed them into nine patches. I sewed many nine patches and then stuffed them into my fabric cupboard. Every now and then, I’d let them come out to play. I’d sew a few more nine patches, arrange and rearrange them, and then reshelf them while family and work responsibilities took priority.

Four years ago, I rediscovered them and took them over to my mom’s house. This quilt was meant for me and I wanted to get it done. Mom drew up a plan for setting those nine patches and together we laid them out and I sewed.

7a

And then the top sat for another year until I rented time on a longarm and quilted it using a computerized program of hearts.  

8a

Sometimes I see the quilting as leaves or maybe heart shaped leaves.

Other quilts needed to be made and finished first and my quilt was folded and put away. When I was at my North Dakota home for Christmas last year, I unfolded it and machine stitched the binding to the top.

6a

At this point I was tempted to return it to the pile but decided to begin to hand sew the binding to the back.

5a

I didn’t get very far as I had to leave it behind when I flew back to Arizona on January 1st. Finally this spring, while I was on a quick trip back to my North Dakota house, I picked it up and finished hand sewing the binding. There you have the real story behind my quilt lovingly named “My 21 Year Quilt.”

9a

I failed to get a pic of the back or to measure it. It is a generous queen size. I put my extra nine patches on the back. I will post pics and stats when I get back home.

Just in case you missed it, I live in two places: North Dakota in the summer and early fall and Arizona in the winter and spring. I love Arizona in the spring.

2a

This Argentine Giant lives at the house next to us. It was loaded with blooms this year that open in the evening and last only 24 hours. I think I’ve convinced my husband that we need one of these in our yard.

I’ll be posting more pics of beautiful cactus blooms on Wednesday. Speaking of blooming, please visit my fellow Blooming Quilters this week. They know that company’s coming and are waiting for your visit.

1

These Blooming Quilters are hosted by Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl. Thanks, Yvonne!

Tami @Thrift Shop Commando Tami gives modern meaning to the phrase “Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, or Go without.” She shows us a quilt that she’s making for her son out of some thrifted fabric. It’s going to be beautiful.

Sandy @Sandy Star Designs Sandy shows us some great eye candy as she puts it. She also shares a link to her tutorial on how to sew an accurate quarter inch seam. Since I can use all the help I can get, I’m going to have a look at that one.

Karen @Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats That’s me. Thanks for stopping by.

Kathleen @Kathleen McMusing  Kathleen shows her quilt history through pictures of really beautiful quilts. Find out who taught her to sew and how she found her love for quilting. She’s got some great quilting tips and I should pay heed to #2 more as it’s the one that stalls my projects.

Sarah @Designs by Sarah J Sarah has a full basket of accomplishments: fabric designer, Aurifil thread designer, pattern designer, and author. You’ll be able to see some of her quilt designs and take a stroll through some of her other posts to see her Dandy Drive block patterns which you can download for free. I know I want to make some of them.

Also check out the other hosts for the 2017 New Quilt Blogger’s Hop, Leanne @she can quilt and Beth @Cooking Up Quilts, to meet even more quilt bloggers.

Remember to enter the giveaways found on our host blogs. There’s a bunch of prizes from some wonderful sponsors. Maybe you’ll be lucky enough to win one so don’t delay as the giveaways are open only for a few days.

Quilting Tip: My quilting tip for you today is to strive to make quilts that are “good enough” and not perfect. If you want perfect, it may take you 21 years to finish.

What I Learned Today:

  1. It is better to have finished after 21 years than not to have finished at all.
  2. I like my 21 Year Quilt as much as I did when I first started it.
  3. My bedroom is still blue. It’s a good thing I don’t redecorate often.
  4. My 21 Year Quilt is still not perfect but it is good enough.

Question: Do you have any older quilts or projects begging to be finished? Here’s a chance to confess how long your project(s) has been shelved and whether you want to finish it or not.

Linking to Monday Making, and Main Crush Monday on Monday; Sew Fresh Quilts on Wednesday; Can I Get a Whoop Whoop, TGIFF, and Finished or Not Friday on Friday. Buttons on my sidebar. and Show Off Saturday on Saturday.

Thanks for stopping by and do come again.

Karen

Tu-Na Quilts

Tu-Na Quilts: It’s Coming-Soon! Will You Be Ready?

Worldwide Quilting Day that is. In just 2 days, on March 18, 2017, quilter’s all over the world will unite with needle in one hand and fabric in the other busily sewing in honor of those who quilted before us, who quilt with us, and who will quilt after us. In honor of this old yet new art. In honor of the comfort our quilts provide for others. In honor of us— Quilt Qwazy Queens!

Welcome to the Quilt Qwazy Queens Blog Hop.

Quilt Qwazy Queens 2017

We’ve got some wonderful sponsors (links below), a great coupon deal from EQ, and giveaways for five days. See the list of hop participants at the end of this post. Giveaways are open only for one day (except Friday which will close on Monday) so don’t delay and enter today. More about how you can enter my giveaway towards the end (Update: my giveaway has closed but the blog hop posts on March 17 are still open. The winners have been announced on Seams to be Sew-March 18, 2017). But first I want to share how I will be honoring Worldwide Quilting Day.

I plan to spend the day at my sewing machine busily working on this cute crib-size quilt.

1a

Ok. The elephants need some work yet. But you get the idea.

I started with a design. I don’t have EQ yet so I use graph paper and colored pencils. But look what’s here!

!!Coupon Alert!!EQ Do You EQ BlogEQ is offering a 30% discount during the hop for visitors… You’ll need the following coupon code when you check out. 

Promo code: EQHOP2017

This code is valid from 3/16/2017 to 3/27/2017. This is a good time to upgrade from EQ6 to EQ7 and even the plugin for EQStitch.

Exclusions: Electric Quilt 7, EQ7 Migration Kit, Upgrade from EQ Mini to EQ7, EQ Mini Migration Kit, EQ Academy classes, and EQ University classes.

6a

I took a look at the new mom’s baby registry to find she had picked an elephant theme in teal, green, and peach.

I’ve cut many squares and sewn many half-square triangles. I made them a bit larger than needed so I could trim them to size. This allows me to make perfect (or nearly) perfect points.

2a

I use a lead pencil to lightly mark a line on the wrong side of the fabric.  I lay the ruler across the points at opposite corners and draw a line on each side of the ruler. This ruler allows for a 1/4″ seam when the square is cut diagonally in half. I find these rulers so handy that I have a set in both of my houses.

3a

It’s a mountain of half-square triangles waiting for the seams to be set, cut apart, and pressed to the side.

Chevrons are so popular.

8a

I don’t have a design wall. I use the guest bed to lay out small quilts.

9a

I use Wonder clips to hold my labels for the blocks and rows. Usually, I don’t have to put so many labels on, but I was getting company and needed to be able to pick up each block and keep the rows together. You can see I number each row going down and I give each block a letter of the alphabet going across. So far so good!

My friend’s daughter had a baby in November so this quilt will be finished soon and heading her way. I think she’ll like it.

Marian of Seams to be Sew has graciously offered to help me with my first giveaway. To enter, please click this link to enter at her website (Update: My giveaway has now closed but the blogs on the hop posting on March 17 are open until Monday). In fact, you might want to check out her blog each day for extra giveaways.

The giveaways today include 3 Fat quarters from Northcott Fabrics Noah’s Ark Collection. It’s new! (Post and Picture below edited to align with rafflecopter at Marian’s post)

Northcott - Noah's Ark

The second giveaway is a Twin size batt of Quilter’s Dream 80/20 batting (The winner of the Quilter’s Dream should be willing to pay shipping costs as follows: USA Priority Mail: 6.75, Canada: 15.50. International: 23.50). Quilters Dream

Quilters Dream

Northcott

Check out these fine blogs to see how these Quilt Qwazy Queens are honoring Worldwide Quilting Day. Will you be quilting like qwazy?

Quilt Qwazy Queens 2017

March 16

Tu-Na Quilts, Travels, and Eats Thanks for stopping by and do come again. Remember to go to Marian’s blog here to enter for my giveaway. (Update: this giveaway is now closed)
Resourceful Momma
UCanQuilt2

March 17

Freemotion by the River
KwiltKrazy
FunThreads Designs
Pink Doxies

March 20

Jane’s Quilting
Seacoast Quilter
Words & Stitches
Quilting Affection

March 21

Thrift Shop Commando
Batts In The Attic
Adventurous Applique and Quilting
Sew Many Yarns

March 22

MooseStash Quilting
Life in the Scrapatch
Seams To Be Sew    Thanks, Marian, for a great inspirational hop.

What I Learned Today:

  1. It’s the little things in life that are important.
  2. Even a little start, is a start.

Question: What will you be doing on Worldwide Quilting Day, March 18, 2017?

Linking to: Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Sew Can She, Finished or Not Friday

Tu-Na Quilts: The Three Bees

I’ve been reading quilting blogs for several years now. During that time I’ve noticed that several blogs sponsor quilting bees where you make a designated block and mail it to that person. Then when it’s your month, they all mail your chosen block to you that they’ve sewn. So this year I decided to join not one but three. I never do anything in a small way.

4a

This block is called Split Hatchet and went to Sharon in Texas.

 

The block above was for the Bee Inspired Group made up of quilters from all over the world. This new group was just formed this year and most of us were part of the 2016 New Quilt Bloggers Group. The block was paper pieced and rather fun to make. I might have to make some more of these for myself. You can find links here at the end of the article to download the paper piecing instructions and templates, just in case you want to make some for yourself.

1a

This block was made for Tanyia in Alabama.

 

The house block above was a fun one I made for the Stash Bee Hive. This group has several subgroups called hives. I belong to a hive of those living in the United States. The hardest part of sewing this block was picking out the colors. Tanyia wanted it to be very scrappy and I love playing with fabric and had lots of options that I would have liked to sew. I think more houses are in my future too. Click here to find the pattern in case you want to construct some too.

 

3a

Jenna in Waco, Texas got this one. I wonder if she knows Chip and Joanna Gains from HGTV?

 

I made the above block called Chainlink as part of the Blossom Heart Hive. Jenna wanted it in bright white, blue, and yellow and told us which colors to use where. She changed the coloring around a bit from the pattern. I found it to be a bit difficult. You can find the pattern here if you want to make it and prove me wrong. Making these blocks gives me an opportunity to find out which ones I really want to make more of. This was not one of them.

The real surprise was when I went to the post office to mail them. I had folded them neatly and carefully put them inside a plastic snap lock bag and squeezed out all the air. It was then folded in half and put into a legal size envelope. I was told the top two blocks could only be sent parcel post and were a whopping $2.67 each. The next day I returned to the same post office with the last block and it went flat rate for $1.19. All were packaged the same and all are similar size blocks. I was helped by different people.

What I Learned Today:

  1. Next time wait in line at the post office until I get the assistant who let me mail it at the cheaper rate.
  2. Start sewing my bee blocks earlier in the month.
  3. Don’t wait until the last couple of days of the month to get my blocks sewn and in the mail.
  4. Since my 22 year old son had already lectured me on internet safety last summer, I had my husband go with me to the post office.

Question: Have you sewn for others?

Linking to Finished or Not Friday and Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?

Tu-Na Quilts: Tu-Na Likes to Shop at Thrift Stores

I’m planning on linking each Thursday to the I Like Thursday Parties hosted by Lee Anna at Not Afraid of Color. There are so many things I like but I want to keep my posts shorter so I’ll focus on one thing that I really like for each of those posts. Look for my “I Like” posts each Thursday.

  1. I like shopping at thrift stores!

 I like—I mean I really like—to shop at thrift stores. I’ve outfitted most of my Arizona kitchen with quality finds from the many thrift stores around here. The Phoenix metro area has over 75 Goodwill stores alone. I haven’t been to all of them yet but I’m working on it.

4a

Call me old-fashioned as I don’t use a computer for designing blocks or quilts but I got really excited when my husband found this new graph notebook for me. Since it was half-price day, I only paid 74 cents for it (they round down).

Besides, Goodwill, there are many other thrift stores, too. In fact, I live within 25 thrift stores in a 10 mile radius of my house. 

3a

Look at this wonderful TV tray table. My AZ sewing group is offering a class on turning these tables into portable ironing boards. Finding this one was a big plus. Cost: only $5.

7a

At a whopping 15 1/4″ x 22 1/4″, it will give me a large surface to press blocks. Plus look at how the legs lock into place (see that black clip) creating a very sturdy pressing station that won’t collapse on me.

My husband shares my joy and we’d rather snoop around a thrift store than go to a movie.

2a

Here’s three yards x 90″ wide each of 100% white (my cost was $1.98) and unbleached cotton muslin ($2.49). I’ll use the unbleached as backing for selvages for my sewing chair in my North Dakota house. I have no idea what I’ll use the white for yet but give me a moment it’ll come to me. The 100% cotton blue with white dots is 1 1/2 yards. Again, I have no specific use for it so I am open to suggestions. I did leave behind a black and white polka dot and have regretted it since.

He shops for Hawaiian shirts and I shop for things I need, some things I don’t, and that one thing that keeps eluding me—not sure what it is but as soon as I find it I’ll be able to stop shopping.

1a

I saved the best for last. Here’s 2 1/4 yards of Holiday Magic designed for Exclusively Quilters ($2.44) and 1 yard of Alexander Henry in black and white (99 cents) .

Up until recently, I have never found any good quilting fabric at a thrift shop. And then it happened—all these quilty finds found all in one day. Now I can hardly wait to get out again.

What I Learned Today:

  1. I love a good deal. I mean I REALLY LOVE A GOOD DEAL. That’s why I like half-price days.
  2. I am still shopping for that one thing I really need/want but really don’t know what it is yet.
  3. I make no distinction between what I need and what I want.
  4. I even shop at thrift stores and regret not buying something even when I could have had it for half-price of practically nothing.

Question: Do you shop at thrift stores? What’s the best deal or item you found there?

Linking to Lee Anna at Not Afraid of Color for I Like Thursdays

Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?

Caroline at Sew Can She for Show Off Saturday

Tu-Na Quilts: Keeping Those Rotary Cutters Sharp

7aaMy Mama Always Says: Where years of experience and bits of quilting wisdom guide me on my quilting journey.

My Mama Always Says: “They (rotary cutters) are sharp.” 

At least they should be. Through the years, I’ve found that some fabrics (or maybe fabric finishes) seem to dull the blades faster than others and I seem to be changing those blades more often than I want. A sharp rotary blade makes cutting so much easier and faster. But what can one do if no new blade is at hand?

I’ve been sharpening my scissors for years by snipping thru aluminum foil. 

10a

To sharpen a scissors quickly, just snip thru a sheet of aluminum foil a few times.

 

As I was cutting the 1.5″ squares for my postage stamp quilt today I said to myself, “I wonder if my rotary cutter blades can be sharpened in the same way?”

12a

A sharp blade makes the cutting job easier and faster.

 

So I grabbed some foil and gave it a try. I laid the foil on the mat and made several cuts with the rotary cutter.

9a

I should close the blade too before laying it on the table. This open blade has become a bad habit for me. After all, my mama’s advice also pertains to preventing an accidental cut from an open blade.

 

Sure enough. It worked. I am now sure I can prolong the life of the blade by using this method to sharpen it. Maybe you can too.

What I Learned Today:

  1. Aluminum foil will sharpen rotary blades as well as scissors.
  2. My Mama is very wise.

Question: How do you sharpen your scissors and rotary blades?

Linking to:

Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl for Tips and Tutorials

Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?

Myra at Busy Hands Quilt for Finished or Not Friday.

Beth at Cooking Up Quilts for Main Crush Monday.