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February 9, 2019
Marvellous Minis with Island Batik from Clever Chameleon

Year of the Pig appliqué by Dione Gardner-Stephen at Clever Chameleon

Happy New Year of the Pig 2019

February is Mini Quilt Month in the Island Batik Ambassador calendar: “Create a mini quilt 24″ x 24″ or smaller, any technique” is the challenge we’ve been given. Minis are a great way to try a new technique, or explore resource/time intensive projects on a doable scale. Or to commemorate an occasion or holiday. Like the Lunar New Year. For my first 2019 Ambassador challenge I decided to make something to mark Chinese New Year. Happy New Year of the Pig!

Year of the Pig mini quilt by Dione Gardner-Stephen at Clever Chameleon

2019 Lunar New Year was on the 5th of February ...

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January 31, 2019
A Lettering Tutorial from Telling Stories Through the Needle's Eye

Well it has been about a month since we wrapped up our Flora and Fauna of Germany Stitch-Along and I (Kara) have been diligently sewing the blocks together. I put together the fabric blocks and even got the border on them, but I felt it needed a little something now that I could see them all put together. Lettering popped into my head as just that something. Since each block has a name, inking that on the block—reminiscent of the old botanical prints—seemed like a good idea. It was a bit of a gamble because once done, it ...

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January 17, 2019
Switch & Stitch Improvisational Stuffed Fish from Gefilte Quilt

Stuffed fish, high in fiber, yum! Here are a couple of whoppers (11" x 5"), made from blue jeans, though you can use any fabric. They serve as pillows and/or toys. This fun and forgiving method makes two at the same time, stacking and switching pieces. It can also be used to create four applique fish, if you're making an underwater quilt! My pair: Fish 1, 
And Fish 2,

With minimal embellishment, they exude serenity. One has a coconut shell button eye. 
Its partner started out with two vintage mother-of-pearl button eyes, and decorative stitching on the seams ...

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January 7, 2019
Stuffed, Embellished Creatures from Denim Jeans for Sensory Stimulation! from Gefilte Quilt

My beautiful, artistic, Aunt Ruthie is 94, and although her mind is  sharp, she's both visually and hearing-impaired, and has severe arthritis in her hands. Last month, we flew to Arizona to visit her and her daughter, my cousin Nina. By accident, I brought her the perfect gift, which she's holding here: 
What the heck is that? Why, it's a hairy, sensory stimulation, two-humped camel, of course! 
The "hair" is 6-strand embroidery floss. Thread it through a large-eyed needle, tie a knot about two inches from the end, bury the needle, bring it out 1/2" away ...

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December 27, 2018
Our Year in Review from Telling Stories Through the Needle's Eye

We thought it would be fun to do a little year-in-review post this week, since it is almost time to say goodbye to 2018. What a year it has been! We have traveled to a few countries, enjoyed meeting many fellow stitchers in different parts of the world, and completed a lot of projects and patterns. Here is our year in pictures and posts. Just click on the caption, which is a link to the original post.

Birmingham Festival of Quilts

Birmingham Festival ...

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November 30, 2018
a seam [Flickr] from Karen Ann Ruane

contemporary embroidery posted a photo:

a seam

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November 22, 2018
Happy Thanksgiving! Start Making Paper Dreidels! from Gefilte Quilt

Happy Thanksgiving! I don't want to panic you, but it's time to prepare for Hanukkah (starts December 2)! A couple of weeks ago I showed off some freemotion-quilted fabric dreidels. They don't spin well, but they do make good decor, as well as shelter for chocolate coins, dinosaurs....

...and even smaller dreidels...
Now Hanukah looms even closer, making this the perfect project for avoiding stores on Black Friday. If you don't have time to quilt, you can use the same approach to make paper or cardstock dreidels, which spin much better than the button-stem kind if ...

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October 22, 2018
I made some little dreidels. I made them out of scraps. They spin like... from Gefilte Quilt

(Sung to the tune of "I had a little dreidel")

I made some quilted dreidels...
...I made them out of scraps (batik scraps, stiff interfacing scraps, gold lamé, etc.)...
...And when I tried to spin them....they spun like cr#p. [End song.] My husband, a physicist, explained that because the buttons and beads are not glued together, they dissipate the energy from the spin, not to mention angular momentum, a phrase I always wanted to type. Oh well. On the brighter side of physics, the lids open and shut... of them has a bobbin at its base ...

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October 20, 2018
Paper-Pieced Dragonfly Appliqué Pillow from Clever Chameleon

Dragonfly appliqué pillow by Dione of Clever Chameleon

I have finished my October paper-piecing adventures for Island Batik, played with my dragonfly appliqué design, and tested out some Y-seam sewing…..

This project sure covered a lot of bases, and my daughter has scored herself a new decorative pillow to match her newest quilt. Would you like to see how I put it together? 

And let me know what you think of the organza for the dragonfly appliqué wings! 

Dragonfly quilt and pillow set by Dione of Clever Chameleon

A Continuing Paper-Piecing Adventure

On Tuesday I showed you how I was attacking my Island Batik Ambassador project for October – at the pool </p>
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October 9, 2018
My Happy Place Row Along Show and Tell Day from Clever Chameleon

Panda Friends colour scheme by Clever Chameleon

Welcome to the My Happy Place Show and Tell Colour Inspiration Tuesday Day!

Today is the last day of the “My Happy Place” row-along and blog hop – the Show and Tell Day. This is the day where a few of the “My Happy Place” blog hoppers come back for an encore….. to show you how they finished their rows (or multiple rows) into usable quilted items.

Being Myself with You appliqué by Clever ChameleonI have finished my “Being Myself with You” row into a wall hanging with a small extra border and some free-motion embroidery. The My Happy Place embroidery template is included in today’s post ...

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October 4, 2018
Petite Floral Wreath from Telling Stories Through the Needle's Eye

Last year in Sainte Marie Aux Mines at the European Patchwork Festival, I (Kara) sat next to a friendly woman from around the Frankfurt area. She was a quilter, an American and an all around lovely person. We struck up a conversation which nine months later, led to an offer to teach at her guild! It's funny how teaching opportunities come along. The next question was what class would they like taught? Our Floral Wreath caught their eye but that is a two (really three) day class so we decided to make a smaller version that would fit into ...

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September 29, 2018
Blogger's Quilt Festival - Fall 2018 from Quilting & Learning

Welcome to the Blogger's Quilt Festival - Fall 2018 hosted by Amy Ellis of Amy's Creative Side.

Connections & Intersections

I've been working on this art quilt for months now, mostly a little bit at a time, until the deadline started looming over me! As much as I dislike that 8 letter word, it does help with motivation.

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August 15, 2018
The Great Outdoors Island Batik Blog Hop from Clever Chameleon

Victoria and Albert quilt by Clever Chameleon in the Great Outdoors

Welcome to my stop on the Island Batik Great Outdoors blog hop!

Once every six months, Island Batik Ambassadors get to showcase one of the latest fabric collections from Island Batik. Today is my first time on an Ambassador hop, and I am really excited to be able to show you these wonderful fabrics in action. 

Victoria and Albert batik fabrics from Island Batik

The fabric collection I was allocated is called Victoria and Albert. There are 30 fabrics in this huge collection and they make me think of an early spring garden. Lots of green, with just a few things starting to bloom. Or perhaps even a ...

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August 14, 2018
Dragonfly Disco – Colour Inspiration Tuesday and Link Party from Clever Chameleon

Dragonfly Disco color scheme by Clever Chameleon

It’s done…. my dragonfly/garden/lattice Great Outdoors Island Batik quilt is done and is ready for show and tell tomorrow. Just in time!

Tomorrow is my turn on the Island Batik Ambassadors blog hop and my job is to showcase the freshly released Victoria and Albert batik collection.  I am sharing the day with Barb from Bejeweled Quilts,  who was allocated the same fabric line as me. I can’t wait to see what Barb has done with them. And I can’t wait to see you back here! Because……

I have a problem to solve and fabric ...

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August 9, 2018
Lovely Botanicals—The Academy of Appliqué 2019 Class Offerings from Telling Stories Through the Needle's Eye

Some of us are fortunate enough to live near friends who share our stitching passion, and we can regularly gather to stitch and share needle stories. Others of us have to work a bit harder to create those opportunities. One perfect place to gather with others who love to appliqué is the annually held Academy of Appliqué, in Williamsburg, Virginia. We are honored to be on the teaching faculty at the Academy; March of 2019 will be our third year as teachers, and we are bubbling with excitement about our classes this year. We hope you will be, too!

The ...

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August 2, 2018
Free Block of the Month 11—Bellflower from Telling Stories Through the Needle's Eye

A field of wildflowers just for the bees!
We are coming up on almost a year of stitching the flora and fauna that I (Kara) see over here in Germany! It has been so interesting to see what new wildflowers pop up along the way; or what insect or bird emerges as the landscape changes through the seasons. I am learning new things every day as I walk through the countryside. Something I recently discovered was that some local farmers wait to cut the hay until the wildflowers have finished blooming in the orchard fields. Why? Because it gives the ...

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July 30, 2018
Sew Early 4 Christmas – Snow Globe Coaster Tutorial and Give-Away from Clever Chameleon

Snow Globe Coaster (Mug Rug) Tutorial from Clever Chameleon

Welcome to the last stop on the 2018 Sew Early 4 Christmas blog hop

It’s finally my turn to host the Sew Early 4 Christmas tutorial series organised by the lovely Joy at Days Filled with Joy. Over the last three Mondays we have been gifting you quick sewing project tutorials that you can sew now and put away for December. So that you can have the last laugh when Christmas tries to  sneak up on you yet again…… I’m assuming it is not just me who sometimes gets surprised by that stealthy ninja of a date!

Sew Early 4 Christmas

So ...

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July 24, 2018
White Christmas in July meets Colour Inspiration Tuesday from Clever Chameleon

White Christmas quilt color scheme by Clever Chameleon

Welcome to my stop on the Christmas in July blog hop. And, since it’s Tuesday, its also our weekly Colour Inspiration Tuesday link up party. Merry Christmas-in-July!

Island Batik challenge July Today I can show you my new Christmas quilt in full! This quilt is also my Island Batik Ambassador project for July. I do hope you’ll like it, it is going to be a very welcome addition to our family’s Christmas decor this year. I’ll finish telling you its story today as well , after having to leave you hanging a bit yesterday.

And I know all this Christmas excitement ...

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July 17, 2018
Mallee Ringneck Parrot: Colour Inspiration Tuesday and Linky Party from Clever Chameleon

Mallee Ringneck Parrot color scheme from Clever Chameleon

Hello!! We are back safely from the Outback.

Which means I have internet and phone coverage again. And that means that I will be slowly catching up on all your lovely comments and seeing what everyone else has been doing on their blogs recently. Being off grid is nice for a while, but quilting is really quite a socially centred pursuit, don’t you think?

The technical isolation of the Outback does have an upside…. for me, heading bush is a time of mental clearing, and of gathering fresh inspiration. Space and time to think and muse over possibilities. Usually ...

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June 9, 2018
Modern Winding Ways Quilt – a progress report from Clever Chameleon

Modern Winding Ways quilt by Clever Chameleon

Time to show you how my Island Batik challenge quilt for June is coming along. 

Remember earlier in the week I had some fabrics chosen and a plan for a modern take on Winding Ways? Well, as of last night I have a finished modern Winding Ways quilt top.  Come on over and take a peek! </p>
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